On 27 March 2019, the Government released its response to the Independent Review of the Food and Grocery Code of Conduct.
The Government is now consulting on draft amendment regulations, Competition and Consumer (Industry Codes–Food and Grocery) Amendment Regulations 2019.
The draft regulations aim to give effect to the Government response by making amendments to the Food and Grocery Code of Conduct (Code). These amendments include:
- enhancing the good faith obligations in the Code to make it clearer and more user friendly for the industry;
- strengthening the dispute resolution procedures to give suppliers more confidence in raising their complaints and having them resolved;
- prohibiting retailers or wholesalers from varying grocery supply agreements with retrospective effect under any circumstances; and
- setting limits on acceptable conduct during price rise negotiations between the parties to restore trust and cooperation between them.
Stakeholder views are sought on whether the amendments appropriately give effect to the Government response and whether there are any unintended consequences for the industry.
Public consultation will be open until 3 June 2019.
For further queries or comments on the amendments to the Code, please contact FGC@treasury.gov.au