Support for true milk labels grows

 
The Federal National Party has backed NSW Farmers’ calls to ban planted-based products using the term milk.
 
Delegates at the recent NSW Farmers Annual Conference voted to call on the State and Federal Health and Agriculture Ministers to implement a uniform standard for labelling that would preclude plant based drinks from using the term ‘milk’.
 
The Nationals followed suit on the weekend, voting at their Federal Council meeting  to push for a ban on alternative and plant-based products using the term 'milk', 'meat' and 'seafood' .
 
Australian Dairy Farmers (ADF) and Dairy Connect have also called for truth in labelling for plant based products.
 
NSW Farmers’ dairy committee chair Colin Thompson said the unanimous support from all farmers at the NSW Farmers annual conference reflected growing alarm at the proliferation of plant-based beverages using the term milk.
 
“We have seen a growing number of plant-based products on supermarket shelves during the past decade achieving consumer marketing leverage using the name ‘milk’,” Mr Thompson said
 
“There is a place for the products, but they are hi-jacking the look and feel of dairy, while claiming to have the nutritional values of fresh cows’ milk.”
 
The growing-number of non-dairy drinks marketed nationally as ‘milks’ in Australian supermarkets include soy, cashew, almond, oat, hemp, rice and coconut extracts.
 
Mr Thompson said a number of countries have banned the use of the term ‘milk’ to describe plant products. 
 
In 2017, the European Court of Justice mandated that dairy terms could not be used on plant-sourced products, even if clarifying terms were used. In 2018, France legislated to protect dairy terms.
 
NSW Farmers will continue to work together to push for Federal & State Governments to implement reform in Australia to ensure that the term milk is reserved for dairy products as a simple and public step to support dairy farmers.

Date: Monday 16 September 2019
Media Contact:  Michael Burt  | 0428 228 988 | burtm@nswfarmers.org.au