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Tuesday, 9 August 1921

Senator RUSSELL (Victoria) (VicePresident of the Executive Council) . - Owing to the impossibility of securing imported rennet during the war, the export of cheese materially suffered; indeed, if local rennet had not been procurable, very little cheese would have been sent away. Attention has recently been given to the production of veils, and I understand that the Sydney Abattoirs, which are under the control of the New South Wales Government, are now in a position to meet the Australian requirements of rennet. An adequate supply of rennet would be of great assistance to the cheese industry, and would enable it to export considerable quantities of cheese. Two shipments of Danish rennet, each of 200 gallons, were imported into Victoria, valued at 15s. 5d. and 19s. 5d. per gallon respectively. Taking an average price of 17s. 6d. per gallon, the general duty of 8s. per gallon would be equal to 45 per cent. I have been informed that in the Western Districtof Victoria a cooperative company wassupplying rennet at 27s. 6d. per gallon. The local rennet is sold at 30s. per gallon. If we desire to export cheese we should be careful to do nothing that would curtailthe supply of rennet, and as a duty is imposed for the purpose of encouraging the production of this commodity, I trust the Committee will allow it to remain.

Senator Payne - Does it not involve the unnecessary slaughter of calves?

Senator RUSSELL - I understand that calves are not slaughtered merely for. the purpose of obtaining rennet.

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