Locals getting rough end of the pineapple without labels
AUSTRALIANS are being given the rough end of the pineapple according to Federal Member for Capricornia Michelle Landry and Minister for Resources and Northern Australia Senator Matt Canavan.
Ms Landry said the recent news that North Queensland growers had lost thousands upon thousands of pineapples which were left to rot is terribly disappointing.
"This is a huge kick in the guts to Australian producers," Ms Landry said.
"Something has to be done to ensure this doesn't happen again.
"These producers put a lot of sweat and hard work into producing the sweetest, juicy local produce, to see all their hard work be wasted is just appalling."
The call comes as Golden Circle is accused of shutting its factory doors over the holiday season causing pineapple farmers to ditch some of their bumper crops of fresh pineapples.
Ms Landry said the recent dumping of pineapples has been a catastrophe in Queensland and Golden Circle needs to come clean with the pineapple lovers and farmers of this state.
"Golden Circle is a company that holds a special place in the heart of many Queenslanders and it would be a crying shame if we were to find out they had sold our pineapple growers down the river," she said.
"As of July 1 they will be required to adhere to a new labelling policy that will identify just how much Australian content is in their frozen and tinned products and there will be heavy fines for those who do not comply.
"Previously the labels have not been sufficiently clear and quite frankly, if Golden Circle are serious about supporting local produce they will adopt the new labels before the deadline in July."
Senator Matt Canavan said Golden Circle owed it to all Queenslanders to identify how much of their product was in fact Australian.
"If you go to the supermarket right now there are various labels on Golden Circle pineapple tins. Some state 'Grown in Australia' while others state 'made from imported ingredients.' The question is, how much of their tinned product do they really import? He said.
"We set up new labelling laws so all Australians can see how fair dinkum big foreign owned companies like this are about using Australian produce.
"Companies have had over a year to implement the new labels which become compulsory on all supermarket shelves from July 1 this year.
"We would expect Golden Circle would try to use as much Australian produce as possible.
"Australian consumers have the right to know and make considered choices in their purchases."
Senator Canavan said it was a crime to see so much of Queensland's pines rot in the field because the cannery wouldn't accommodate Queensland growers in the past month.
He hopes the new labels will help to alleviate similar situations happening in the future.