Food & Agribusiness Talking Points | 08/11/2016

Food&AgriTPBIn today’s talking points: Wal-Mart to invest $25 million in China Food Safety Research; Australia’s ‘one brand, one logo’ approach for maximum Chinese impact; ACCC confirms dairy industry price and competition inquiry; Chinese ownership of Australian agricultural land continues to rise

Wal-Mart to invest $25 million in China Food Safety Research

Wal-Mart Stores Inc., the world’s largest retailer is planning to invest $25 million over the next five years in food safety research. The plan comes after the retailer was hit by high-profile product scandals and now looks towards strengthening its foothold in China. The company is overhaulings its business worldwide to meet the demands of e-commerce after struggling to adapt its stores to meet Chinese consumers and tastes. The funding has launched the Walmart Food Safety Collaboration Center where it will bring together both domestic and international research on areas such as food borne illnesses and developing solutions for China’s food supply chain.

Read more at Bloomberg

Australia’s ‘one brand, one logo’ approach for maximum Chinese impact

Australia’s producers, peak bodies and both sides of politics look to set aside differences in order to sell products into China under a new ‘one brand, one logo’ approach. The new strategy hopes to unlock new export markets and pitch Australia as the gold-standard in export marketing. Facilitated by the recent free trade agreement, the new strategy would have all Australian food products like beef, cheese and condiments predominantly branded as Australian instead of their individual branding. The new labelling strategy would also be designed to counterfeit proof goods.

Read more at Sydney Morning Herald

ACCC confirms dairy industry price and competition inquiry

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has confirmed its previously discussed industry inquiry will be to investigate the competitive engagement between Australian milk processors. The ACCC also hopes to understand foreign supply markets for the Australian dairy farms and their milk products. The inquiry comes after milk solids prices in southern Australia plummeted from $6 a kilogram to $4.70 due to poor global prices. The ACCC has the ability to exact information from involved parties including processors and retailers. The ACCC has said it aims to paint a clear picture on the current market, and make recommendations to ensure it remains fair and competitive.

Read more at: Farm Online

Chinese ownership of Australian agricultural land continues to rise

According to a Fairfax media analysis of reported land sales, the amount of agricultural land owned by Chinese interests in Australia is more than double of that reported by the Australian Taxation Office last month. The bulk of the 3 million hectares owned by Chinese interests come from a recent series of big sales in Western Australia. Chinese ball bearing billionaire Xingfa Ma is the reason for the sudden jump in Chinese ownership with two significant purchases of land totalling 1, 344, 000 hectares. According to the ATO, China ranks fifth behind Britain, the US, the Netherlands and Singapore but with recent reports that ranking would rise to third.

Read more at: The Sydney Morning Herald