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National Foods to review model farm concept

National Foods has today responded to correspondence from the Tasmanian Farmers and Graziers Association with a view to resolving the milk price dispute with Tasmanian suppliers.

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December 11, 2009

National Foods has today responded to correspondence from the Tasmanian Farmers and Graziers Association with a view to resolving the milk price dispute with Tasmanian suppliers.

General Manager Milk Procurement and Inbound Logistics Murray Jeffrey said, “We still genuinely want a resolution to the milk price dispute in Tasmania and, as a gesture of good faith, we are prepared to extend our deadline and work with the collective bargaining group on a review of our model farm concept.”

National Foods will extend, to 31 December, the period in which National Foods suppliers can have exclusive access to the company’s milk price offer, which includes the market- driven price increase for Tasmania, Victoria and South Australia announced earlier today.

“We will not make our offer available to any non-National Foods suppliers, beyond those who have already entered into discussions with us,” Mr Jeffrey said.

“We are also willing to work with the collective bargaining group on a review of our ‘model farm’ concept which many farmers find confusing.

“The ‘model farm’ sets out standard volume, quality and compositional attributes that underpin National Foods’ contract schedule and ability to maintain a minimum price guarantee over the Fonterra price. In our discussions with farmers it has become clear that there is confusion around how this translates to actual dollars according to farmers’ individual supply patterns so we are determined to work consultatively to make this simpler and clearer, while retaining the underlying principles.”

For more information:
Geoff Lynch
General Manager Corporate Affairs
03 9188 7616
0405 319 819
geoff.lynch@www.lionco.com