The Business Council of Co-operatives and Mutuals (BCCM) welcomes Labor’s announcement that it would invest $3 million for the Farming Together program. 

The BCCM developed the country’s first “reg-tech” for co-operatives for the Farming Together program dramatically cutting red tape and the costs of starting up a co-op.

BCCM’s CEO and member of the industry advisory group for Farming Together, Melina Morrison, said, “We are pleased with the support Labor has pledged to our co-op sector through this investment.  It is important that farmers understand the co-op structure and the way it can help them reduce supply chain costs and get a fairer return to the farmgate, thus helping to shore up the future of Australian owned agriculture.  Farmers are under pressure to compete in global markets. Being part of a co-op can be a huge help.”

This announcement follows an announcement last week when the ALP committed to a Growth and Productivity Taskforce.  The proposed taskforce’s overarching responsibilities will be to examine the structure, distribution and effects of capital ownership in Australia. The taskforce, which will sit in Treasury, has an explicit remit to implement reforms to put co-operatives and mutuals on a level playing field with other business structures.

“The taskforce will be immediately tasked with implementing the remaining recommendations from the Senate Inquiry into Co-operatives and Mutuals, which primarily involves giving recognition to co-ops as a viable business model. This will ensure that states and territories as well as federal jurisdictions work together to ensure regulation of co-operatives is consistent and enabling,” said Ms Morrison.

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