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Tasmanian Potato Farmers accepted Simplot's latest price offer

Nathan Richardson, Chairperson of the Tasmanian Farmers & Graziers Association (TFGA) Vegetable Council.

More than 80 potato growers in Tasmania, Australia felt a sense of relief when receiving Simplot's second offer for their processing potatoes, says Nathan Richardson, chairperson of the Tasmanian Farmers & Graziers Association (TFGA) Vegetable Council.

The offer was proposed at a meeting in Deloariane on Tuesday night and will see a AU$35 per tonne increase for all varieties of potatoes in the upcoming season and a minimum AU$10 per tonne increase next year.

Simplot's first offer of a AU$20 per tonne price increase was knocked back by the growers in July.

Nathan Richardson:

“There's a lot of growers out there that simply weren't making money out of potatoes.”

“This increase doesn't mean they will be able to buy the farm next door but what it means is they have the ability to plan where they want to go.”

“What it means is it keeps a bit of morale, and that's pretty important. The main thing is that it has relieved a little bit of pressure.”
Nathan Richardson said the growers initially calculated a $70 per tonne increase was required over the next two years.

Nathan Richardson:

“We will have 60 per cent of that and as an industry, grower or negotiation committee you're never going to get exactly what you want.”

“A pretty important part of the supply chain has recognised that we have got to maintain profitability at the farm gate because up until yesterday (Tuesday) afternoon the industry really was on a knifes edge.”

“This is a step in the right direction. Does it put everything to sleep? No.”
He said the growers' committee had a strong relationship with Simplot.