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Friday, 2 July 1920

Mr GREENE (RICHMOND, NEW SOUTH WALES) (Minister for Trade and Customs) - The answers are as follow : -

1.   The following cable has been received from the High Commissioner : - " Referring to your telegram 1st April, next season's butter, Osborne and Sinclair have signed on behalf of Commonwealth Dairy Produce Pool contract with Ministry of Pood, terms as follows: - Price, £12 per cwt. f.o.b. for butter grading 90 points, with 1s. per cwt. more for each point from 91 to 95 inclusive, and1s. per cwt. less for each point under 90 points, and extra 3s. per cwt. for unsalted, which is not to exceed 25 per cent. of the whole, the Government to pay storage charges after an average of six weeks, the Australian committee to have the right to supply butter not exceeding 50 tons per month to South Africa, the period contract to be from 1st September, 1920, to 31st March, 1921, and to include butter delivered at cool stores Australia till the last-mentioned date. Financial arrangements and other conditions to be the same as under the existing contract. Purchase of cheese under consideration."

2.   The nature of the arrangements (if any) necessary to give effect to the contract are at present under consideration.

3.   The conference to which the honorable member alludes included delegates in the election of whom all the co-operative butter and cheese factories throughout Australia had a vote. The proprietary factories had separate representation. It was unanimously decided at that conference that in event of Great Britain deciding to retain control of dairy produce, delegates be sent to England to arrange a sale of our surplus production on the best terms possible, and that the selection of these delegates bo left in the hands of the Dairy Produce Pool Committee. The British Government decided to retain control. Messrs. Osborne and Sinclair were selected and sent to England, with the result indicated in answer to question No. 1.

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