Deputy Prime Minister, Luke Hartsuyker with staff at Woolies in Byrn Bay.
Deputy Prime Minister, Luke Hartsuyker with staff at Woolies in Byrn Bay.

Labels highlighting Aussie produce tested on Northern Rivers

AUSTRALIA's new Country of Origin (CoOL) labelling got a test run at Woolies in Bryon Bay on Friday.

Assistant Minister to the Deputy Prime Minister, Luke Hartsuyker, today took part in a demonstration.

Minister Hartsuyker said the labelling changes were significant, and it was important to show shoppers what they mean and the new level of information they provide.

"The CoOL labels are popping up everywhere in our supermarkets, with just over a year before the changes are mandatory," Minister Hartsuyker said.

"It is great to see so many businesses on board early, giving consumers the information they have been demanding to see.

"It has been a pleasure to visit supermarkets to assist with in-store demonstrations around the changes-part of a public awareness campaign around CoOL which includes advertising across television, radio, newspapers, online and in shopping centres.

"This demonstration gave locals a chance to look at examples of the new labels, to have them explained and then to ask questions, along with information to take home.

"Australians want to know where their food was grown, made or packed, and how much was sourced from Aussie farmers.

"Our produce has a reputation of being safe, high-quality, clean and green-it is important shoppers know they are getting the real deal, and not a raw deal.

"For most food made, grown or produced in Australia, the new labels feature the kangaroo in a triangle symbol and a bar chart indicating the percentage of Australian ingredients.

"The labels make it clear where an item has been produced, grown, made or packed.

"Imported goods cannot be claimed to be made in Australia just because they underwent canning, slicing or reconstitution in Australia.

"Shoppers will be able to consider the new labels when deciding on their next grocery shop."

More information for consumers can be found at foodlabels.industry.gov.au, and business.gov.au/foodlabels has information and tools for business.