Pandemic shows the value of reshoring, co-ops, says BCCM chief

The Business Council of Cooperatives and Mutuals head has said the current Covid-19 pandemic has demonstrated the value of co-operatives and the opportunity for Australia to reshore manufacturing lost overseas in recent decades.

Speaking to Farm Weekly, Melina Morrison said Australia could “build back” manufacturing capability lost overseas, citing the food processing sector that had seen this diminish over two decades of demutualisation.

“If we think of the big brands that have gone missing that we grew up with like Golden Circle and Goulburn Valley SPC – they were co-operatives of primary producers and they owned that processing part of the supply chain as well,” Morrison told Farm Weekly.

“Now, more than any other time, we are seeing how co-operation between groups is required to solve the problem that we’re facing – whether it’s the government trying to co-operate with the business community and everyday Australians, or it’s groups of people that share a common need that are coming together in order to fulfill that need.”

She noted cooperation by the lobster industry in WA as an example of working together to reopen export supply chains and save “hundreds, if not thousands” of jobs in the state.


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