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Tuesday, 8 November 1938

Mr POLLARD (Ballarat) .-I wish to add a little more to what I have already said on this subject. I cannot support the amendment. It is a pity that the position of Tasmania has been over-stressed. Honorable members are showing a tendency to be a little too generous to that State. Tasmania has no inherent vested rights in the apple and pear industry. After all, it should be remembered that Victoria has 30,000 acres, and Tasmania has only 26,000 acres, under apples. We must face the facts of the situation. It has been said that Tasmania pioneered the apple exporting industry. The fact is that Victoria exported the first apples from Australia, 'and has ever since been active in the industry. Although Tasmania is separated from the mainland by Bass Strait it should not be assumed that it necessarily suffers some disadvantage in respect of mainland markets. Shipping freights from Launceston and Hobart to Sydney are lower than railway freights from Harcourt, an apple-growing area of Victoria, to Mildura, an appleconsuming area in Victoria. The Tasmanian growers are in the better position to take advantage of the Sydney market than are the growers in Victoria. Tasmania should not be given an undue preference in connexion with this industry. In the final analysis we must surely bear in mind the welfare of the growers of all the States. The major purpose of this measure and others similar to it is to help the individual grower, and, in some degree, the individual wage-earner in the industry. I do not think we should make a rigid rule in regard to quotas, for that might put the applegrowers of Western Australia, Queensland and Victoria in a most unfair position. The Tasmanian growers will have four representatives on this board, which is twice the number that any other State will have, and four times the number that some States will have. They should be able to watch the interests of Tasmania. I do not desire to rob the Tasmanian apple-growers of any inherent rights that they possess. All I ask of honorable members is that they shall give fair consideration to the claims of applegrowers irrespective of where they happen to live.

Mr Frost - The honorable member would cripple the apple-growers of Tasmania.

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