Member Notice – ASA Industry funding proposal
The Australian Sugar Industry Alliance (ASA) brings together the entirety of the Australian sugar industry to provide a united front on matters of common interest, both on a domestic and international platform. Currently ASA is made up of industry leaders from CANEGROWERS, the Australian Sugar Milling Council (ASMC), Queensland Sugar Limited (QSL) and Sugar Research Australia (SRA).
- Traditionally funding of ASA activities has been sourced predominantly via QSL during a time it was a single desk marketer. Funding was absorbed by both growers and millers in the form of “being allocated from within the shared pool”. Funds provided previously has been sourced from QSL’s Annual Reports and listed under the category “Research Funding To The Sugar Industry”
- Financial year ended 30/06/2017 – $1,079,000
- Financial year ended 30/06/2016 – $465,000
- Financial year ended 30/06/2015 – $976,000
- Financial year ended 30/06/2014 – $720,000
In view of more recent significant changes in the overall structure of the industry in Qld and that QSL is no longer a single desk marketer this avenue of raising ASA industry good funding has ceased. As a result ASA/industry needs to establish a new mechanism for raising funds for industry good initiatives that effect all stakeholders in the sugar supply chain. Previously ASA has approached and Sugar Terminals Limited (STL) has agreed in principle to a collection mechanism by which Industry Good Funds (IGF) could be raised in the form of existing activity charge from its raw sugar storage customers through its Storage and Handling Agreements (SHAs), subject to broad industry wide support via STL customers and all cane grower representative organisations to include BDCG, ACFA and CANEGROWERS.
Industry Good Fund Key Focus Areas include:
- Social Licence to Operate – Oversight and governance structure for the delivery and reporting against the Sugar Industry Social Licence to Operate Strategy
- Trade Policy and Market Access – provided coordination and strategic direction for the Trade Policy and Market Access activities for the Australian sugar industry
- RD&E – provide input and feedback into SRA on key strategic issues.
- Biosecurity – provide coordinated advice to SRA and government agencies on biosecurity policy matters and response arrangements.
ASA Investment History
Trade & Market Access
- A total of $1.1m has been expended over 6 years
Nutrition & Health
- A total of $2.1m has been expended over 4 years
RD & E/Sugar Research Australia
- A total of $585k over 1 year (2012/2013)
Sugar Nutrition Program is an ongoing and major focus of ASA given:
- Sugar landscape deteriorating globally
- Increase in dietary guidelines eg. WHO ideal of six (6) teaspoons/day
- Policy discussion on added sugar labelling requirements
- Over 28 countries introducing Sugar Sweetened Beverage (Soda) Tax
- Increasing industry reformulation strategies and pledges
2. Obesity increasing globally, including in key Asian markets
- Sugar tax already introduced in Philippines, and taxes or sugar labelling changes are being discussed in Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, Vietnam and Hong Kong
3. Increasing anti-sugar lobby groups including Obesity Policy Coalition’s tipping the scales
The following proposal has been put forward by ASA to BDCG for the individual collectives members consideration.
- Raising a proposed charge of 30 cents per tonne of actual sugar that is received into sugar terminals during the crushing season. Funds raised will provide the finances for ASA to continue the industry’s social licence to operate program and its trade and market access program.
- A working group to include BDCG representation to be formed to develop restructure options for ASA through constitutional changes for implementation prior to the commencement of the 2019 crushing season. The restructure will provide for a new representational base, to include BDCG representation on the ASA board, for the alliance as well as establish governance arrangements for the identification of industry good programs and funding into the future.
- Offer acknowledges that BDCG’s support to raising proposed funds of $0.30 cents per tonne of actual sugar is conditional upon resolution of the restructure of ASA to BDCG’s satisfaction prior to the 2019 crushing season. Should this not occur BDCG can withdraw support for STL to its charge and ASA undertakes that it will terminate its arrangements with STL.
- ASA Agreement with STL to include a termination clause whereby should BDCG (or any other stakeholder) give written notice to ASA and STL of it ceasing to support the charge, then the Agreement will be terminated.
KCGO values the opinions of its members and your input into the proposal put forward by ASA would be appreciated. A combined BDCG growers meeting will be scheduled following season completion to discuss in order to gauge grower interest.
If you have any queries in the meantime please do not hesitate to contact this office or any member of the board.
Please note the consensus of all three collectives (KCGO, PCGO, ICGO) will be sought given ASA board directorship will be on account of BDCG.
Manager / Company Secretary