Labor backs eBay over Victoria’s rural businesses

Wednesday 4 January 2016


Agriculture Minister Jaala Pulford is beefing up the pockets of global corporations over Victorian small business as she implements her go-it-alone eID scheme, Shadow Minister for Agriculture Peter Walsh has said.

Ms Pulford told The Weekly Times today: “there is no requirement to buy gear other than subsidised electronic tags and an applicator — which costs about $70-80 on eBay”.

Mr Walsh said Ms Pulford, as Minister for Agriculture and Regional Development, should be supporting Victoria's rural small businesses – not acting as a billboard for a massive global website like eBay.

“Labor blocked rural supply stores from selling the new eID tags and is now telling farmers to choose cheap equipment from an online retailer – instead of promoting the businesses that support our local rural community groups.

“There’s not a single cent of benefit for country communities in this kind of anti-small business attitude.”

Under the previous system, sheep producers would go to rural supply stores to buy ear tags for sheep and goats.

From January 1, only the Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources can sell the tags.

Mr Walsh said the eID rollout also failed to provide adequate support for sheep producers who wanted to upgrade their on-farm technology.

He said grants of a maximum of $3000, from a pool of $750,000, guaranteed some producers would miss out.

“There are 28,000 sheep producers in Victoria, so $750,000 is a token handout from a city-centric Labor Government hell-bent on short-changing country Victorians,” Mr Walsh said.

“It is time Jaala Pulford’s rushed go-it-alone scheme started working in the best interests of Victorian sheep producers.”                                           

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