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Wheat farmers express grave concerns at future of wheat industry.

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Wheat farmers express grave concerns at future of wheat industry MEDIA RELEASE Thursday, 2 March 2006

Over fifty concerned farmers met with Member for Pearce Hon Judi Moylan MP to voice their concerns about the future of wheat sales and the single desk.

With the Cole Enquiry in full swing, farmers across the Pearce Electorate are apprehensive about any likely changes to the way in which wheat is marketed in the future.

Ms Moylan initiated the meeting, with the support of local identity Peter Boyle, which was held in York. Many of the region’s prominent wheat growers made themselves available to speak about the issues.

As there had been a lot of speculation in the media, Ms Moylan said it was important to meet with growers so she can reflect and support their views in Federal Parliament.

During the meeting each attendee was asked for their comments and one of the main topics raised was the single desk marketing of wheat.

“The meeting expressed strong support for the retention of single desk and for the excellent work of AWB in marketing wheat and for the system of single desk sales. Many growers were worried about talk of doing away with the single desk,” she said.

“My foremost concern is how we continue to ensure a strong, reliable marketing operation and the maintenance of the best achievable prices. Looking after the interest of farmers must be paramount,” she said.

Recently returned from Iraq, the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Trade Hon Mark Vaile announced that the meetings between dignitaries in Baghdad had led to a recommitment to continue wheat trade between the two countries.

Mr Vaile said it was clear that “Iraq values the relationship with Australia and particularly as a supplier of high quality wheat”.

It was resolved at the York meeting to present a petition to the Federal Parliament to support the work of AWB and the single desk.

Anyone wanting to sign the petition should contact Shelley Ludgate on 08 96 417 012 or Peter Boyle on 08 96411 186. Alternatively copies will be available at the Shire of York, 1 Joaquina Street, York Tel: 08 9641 2233 and in the Office of Hon Judi Moylan MP, which is located at 490 Great Eastern Highway, Greenmount. Tel: 08 9294 3222.