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The current Australian Dairy Industry Code of Conduct came into force on 1 January 2020 to improve the clarity and transparency of trading arrangements between dairy farmers and those buying their milk.

Dairy farmers and processors must comply with the Code. Some sections do not apply when a processor is a small business entity or a dairy farmer is dealing with a processor that is a small business entity.

The Code applies to retailers, such as supermarkets, only to the extent that they purchase milk directly from farmers. The relationship between retailers and processors may be covered by the Food and Grocery Code of Conduct.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) is responsible for enforcement of the Code and investigates alleged breaches. Decisions about which matters to pursue are made in line with the ACCC’s Compliance and Enforcement Policy. Certain breaches of the Code could lead to the ACCC issuing an infringement notice or asking a court to impose a financial penalty.

The Code does not apply to dairy farmers and processors with a milk supply agreement that was entered into before 1 January 2020, unless that contract is varied or renewed.

All contracts, no matter when they were entered into, must be compliant with the Code from 1 January 2021.

Click here to read the Dairy Industry Code of Conduct.
Click here to read the farmer guide to the Dairy Industry Code of Conduct.
Click here to read the processor checklist for the Dairy Industry Code of Conduct.

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