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Where brands would previously compete with no-frills brands, now they produce them as part of a new strategy. AAP/Daniel Munoz

No-frills alternatives are helping our favourite brands survive

Only a few years ago jokes about home brand products were quite common. Having a blue and white or red and white dinner meant enjoying generic brand fare that night around the table. But the recent intensification…
In 2008, Chinese baby formula and milk products were tainted with melamine, killing six babies and hospitalising many more. EPA/Wu Hong

SPC Ardmona’s bailout is crucial given China’s food safety record

SPC Ardmona’s $22 million lifeline from the Victorian government seems to have saved Australia’s largest food packaging company. Yet the firm’s recent tribulations are a reminder of why I regularly choose…
A shift towards fresh food and improved consumer protections in China provides opportunities and threats for Australian food producers. dcmaster/Flickr

SPC Ardmona and the cheap Chinese food challenge

The political lobbying accompanying the government decision to withhold financial support from SPC Ardmona has overshadowed the big structural issues facing Australia’s preserved food industry. The two…
The Productivity Commission has recommended the car industry should receive no additional government funding. AAP

No sacred cows: Productivity Commission targets Toyota

Ford and Holden gone. SPC Ardmona in jeopardy. Toyota under threat. The Productivity Commission’s (PC) position paper on automotive industry support fires a clear shot across the bows of the manufacturing…
Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Industry Minister Ian Macfarlane have drawn a line in the sand on industry assistance…or have they? Alan Porritt/AAP

SPC Ardmona decision is fiscal policy disguised as industry policy

Announcing the decision to refuse assistance to SPC Ardmona, Industry Minister Ian Macfarlane said: “I think it is a clear delineation of where this government believes we need to go with industry policy…
Our fruit industry is struggling against cheap imports - but should we be doing more to protect our “food bowl to Asia”? AAP

Are we allowing our fruit industry to wither?

The sight of Victorian fruit farmers bulldozing surplus trees due to the loss of supply contracts is a dramatic way to illustrate the quandary facing both Australian industry and growers. In April Victorian…

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