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Thursday, 20 April 1972
Page: 1970

Mr Foster asked the Minister for Primary Industry, upon notice:

(1)   Did his predecessor refuse a democratic ballot for representation on the Australian Honey Board while approving compulsory secret ballots for trade unions.

(2)   Has the Commercial Apiarists' Association of South Australia produced to his Department evidence of loss of traditional markets and poor promotion of new markets by comparison with other exporting countries, failure to inform producers of the implications of legislation setting up the Board, price cutting in favour of buyers exercising monopoly or restrictive trade practices and having trading connections with Board members, and unclear annual financial reports.

(3)   If so, will he now grant a poll of honey producers or provide documented rebuttal of this evidence.

Mr Sinclair - The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

(1)   No. However both my predecessor and I have received requests from the Commercial

Apiarists' Association of South Australia for a poll of honey producers to determine whether the Australian Honey Board should be abolished.

(2)   and (3) Allegations on these matters have been made by the Commercial Apiarists' Association of South Australia which have been examined by my Department Apart from the reason that there is no substance in the allegations, I would not be prepared to accede to a request for a poll of producers on the advice of some beekeepers who have received no support from the State Apiarists' Associations comprising the Federal Council of Australian Apiarists' Associations.

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