ACCC to reauthorise levy raise for container recycling scheme

The ACCC has proposed to allow product stewardship organisation AgStewardship to increase its levy on the sale of agricultural and veterinary (agvet) chemicals by participating manufacturers.

Funds raised from the levy are used in the drumMUSTER and ChemClear programs to collect and recycle agvet chemical containers and safely dispose of agvet chemicals.

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AgStewardship intends to increase the levy from four cents per litre of kilogram to six cents, to keep pace with increased expenses and to fund improvements to its programs.

This is the first increase in the levy since it began in 1998 and the ACCC is proposing to reauthorise the collection of the levy at the higher level for a further five years.

Over the lifespan of the programs, drumMUSTER has diverted more than 32 million containers from landfill and ChemClear has resulted in more than 661,000 litres of agvet chemicals being collected for safe disposal and recycling.

ACCC Commissioner Roger Featherston said the programs mean collection and recycling services are provided at no further cost to purchasers of agriculture and veterinary chemicals included in the scheme.

“As a result, many more containers and chemicals are returned and safely disposed of, which reduces the negative environmental, health and safety consequences of improper disposal, leading to better outcomes for farms and the environment,” Mr Featherston said.

Currently 116 manufacturers of agvet chemicals participate in the scheme, which AgStewardship estimates covers more than 90 per cent of Australian agvet chemical manufacturers.

“This is an impressive level of coverage, but if more manufacturers can be encouraged to participate in the scheme, then it should achieve even greater environmental and other public benefits,” Mr Featherston said.

Barker Trailers’ AFIA win highlights industry passion

Original equipment manufacturer, and third-generation business, Barker Trailers, received the ‘Investment in People’ Award at the Victorian Transport Association’s 29th Australian Freight Industry Awards (AFIA).

The annual awards event, recently held at the Palladium at Crown, Melbourne, attracted 700 leading freight operators and delegates.

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Barker Trailers has been manufacturing semi-trailers since 1974 in the Loddon Mallee region and has production sites in Woodend and Maryborough. Brothers, Arthur and Ernie Barker started the business with a passion – to build great trailers with great craftsmanship for great customers, all underpinned by great people.

Over 10,000 trailers later, the passion remains. Through the ups and downs of family business, in a challenging yet rewarding industry, Barker trailers continues to invest heavily in people and its passion for craftsmanship.

Focused investment in safety, skills, diversity, leadership and partnership has seen Barker not only survive but also proudly strengthen.

“It truly is an honour to be recognised among industry peers for our investment in people, who are – by far – our most valuable asset,” said Barker Trailers CEO, Simon Meadows. “Congratulations to the team at Barker Trailers, and thanks also to the Victorian Transport Association, who do a wonderful job across the industry.”

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