VIDEO: Steggles chickens cramped 

Steggles chickens that were labelled ‘free to roam’ were being held in cramped sheds and given less than the size of an A4 sheet of paper in space, the Federal Court has found.
杭州龙凤

Two of Australia’s largest poultry producers who supply Steggles branded chickens, Baiaida Poultry and Bartter Enterprises, were found to have made false, misleading and deceptive claims on their packaging and advertisements in a finding delivered on Monday.

Court documents show the poulty producers’ sheds in the Griffith regionwere holding an average of 30,000 to 40,000 chickens, or almost 20 chickens per square metre.

At the same time the two companies, which control a significant share in the Australian chicken meat market, were spending an estimated $5 million on advertising, assuring their customers that their chickens were raised in “large carefully ventilated barns with comfortable bedding material covering the floor, where they are free to roam and have easy access to food and water”.

Justice Richard Tracey disagreed with the companies’ reality of “free to roam”, saying the ordinary and natural meaning of the phrase ‘free to roam’ was “the largely uninhibited ability of the chickens to move around at will in an aimless manner”.

For the majority of the chicken’s life (42 days), the chicken could not move more than a metre without being obstructed by a barrier of clustered birds, Justice Tracey said, after touring the sheds near Griffith, in regional NSW.

Yet without legislated definitions, terms like ‘free-range’ and ‘free to roam’ will continue to be misused by producers keen to cash in on the higher prices these labels attract, Greens NSW MP Dr Mehreen Faruqi said.

“Cramming birds into sheds with less than an A4 sheet of paper to move and conning consumers into thinking that the birds are ‘free to roam’ represents the worst kind of consumer deception.”

Mr Faruqi said the term ‘free to roam’ is a marketing thought bubble, not a genuine reference to animal welfare standards, .

The Federal Court finding was a good result for the the Australian Consumer and Competition Commission which instigated legal action against the two poultry producers in 2011.

The misleading claims not only deliberately deceived ethical-conscious consumers, but created unfair competition between poultry providers who paid additional costs to ensure their chickens were “free range” or “free to roam”, the ACCC Commissioner Sarah Court said.

“We know that consumers are willing to pay premium prices for foods that have credence claims about them, such as free to roam or organic,” Ms Court said.

These ‘free to roam’ claims were plainly directed at enticing consumers, who may have had ethical concerns about the treatment of animals, she said.

The peak industry body for Australia’s chicken meat, The Australian Chicken Meat Federation, was also found to have engaged in false, misleading and deceptive conduct, by claiming on its website that chickens produced in Australia were ‘free to roam’ or able to ‘roam freely’ in large barns.

The companies all risk fines of $1.1 million per penalty.

Justice Tracey will hear penalty submissions on a date to be fixed.

SMH

Maroon momentum vs Homebush hoodoo

Momentum belongs to Queensland heading into the Origin decider but the reawakened Maroons must contend with an unflattering record at ANZ Stadium if they want to seal an eighth-consecutive series.
杭州龙凤

It was a relaxed and contented Queensland outfit that was unveiled in the central Queensland city of Rockhampton on Tuesday morning, with the same 17 being carried forward after the dominant 26-6 win at Suncorp Stadium.

It is the first time in the Maroon streak of dominance over the past seven years they have fielded an unchanged 17-man squad from one game to the next.

With no suspensions or health concerns for his players hanging over his head, coach Mal Meninga can enjoy a luxury NSW doesn’t have given their injury predicament and ordinary showing in game two.

As if to illustrate the point, the Maroons are spending the evening on a tropical island owned by brewer XXXX and won’t train until Thursday. Meninga joked he would finally be able to walk behind a bar without fear of being shown the door.

But the Queensland side, which swiftly acknowledged their lack of intensity in the series opener, remains under no illusion as to what awaits them on Wednesday week at Homebush.

It is a venue that continues to prove a thorn in their side, with the Maroons winning there just four times in 20 outings since 1999 (one draw). They have lost their past three in Sydney, including game one where the Blues jumped out of the gates and were never headed.

“It’s a challenge for us. We haven’t done well down in Sydney for a number of years now. It all comes down to how we want to play and what we’re willing to do for each other,” Meninga said.

“Momentum is a good thing but in Origin, it’s game by game. It’s important you do everything you possibly can. It comes down to that week, what you think about, and your desire.”

The Maroons won the clean sweep game in Sydney in 2010 and a deciding game in 2008, both of which Queensland captain Cameron Smith will channel as his side tries to further their record run.

“We knew we could play well in game one but we were outplayed early. Just looking at those matches where we’ve gone down there and been successful, it’s nice to have that in the back of the mind,” Smith said.

“They are beatable down there, even though it’s a hostile environment. We have to get stuck into them and hope it generates a result for us.”

Meninga also said NSW would be foolish to single out Billy Slater in game three, with the fullback the latest Villain of the Week after his elbow on Mitchell Pearce in game two.

“That’s good. We’ve got 16 other great players. We’re happy with that,” Meninga said.

“I know Billy went on The Footy Show on Thursday night and tried to explain himself. But it’s a game of rugby league. These things happen. Cop it on the chin and get on with it.”

The original release of this article first appeared on the website of Hangzhou Night Net.

Steggles ‘free to roam’ chicken cramped: court

Source: Sydney Morning Herald
杭州龙凤

Steggles chickens sold as “free to roam” were being held in cramped sheds and given less than the size of an A4 sheet of paper in space, the Federal Court has found.

Two of Australia’s largest poultry producers who supply Steggles branded chickens – Baiada Poultry and Bartter Enterprises – were found to have made false, misleading and deceptive claims on their packaging and advertisements in a finding delivered on Monday.

Court documents show the poultry producers’ sheds were holding an average of 30,000 to 40,000 chickens, or almost 20 chickens per square metre.

At the same time the two companies, which control a significant share in the Australian chicken meat market, were spending an estimated $5 million on advertising, assuring their customers that their chickens were raised in “large carefully ventilated barns with comfortable bedding material covering the floor, where they are free to roam and have easy access to food and water”.

Justice Richard Tracey disagreed with the companies’ reality of “free to roam”, saying the ordinary and natural meaning of the phrase “free to roam” was “the largely uninhibited ability of the chickens to move around at will in an aimless manner”.

For the majority of the chicken’s life (42 days), the chicken could not move more than a metre without being obstructed by a barrier of clustered birds, Justice Tracey said, after touring the sheds near Griffith, in regional NSW.

Yet without legislated definitions, terms like “free-range” and “free to roam” will continue to be misused by producers keen to cash in on the higher prices these labels attract, Greens NSW MP Dr Mehreen Faruqi said.

“Cramming birds into sheds with less than an A4 sheet of paper to move and conning consumers into thinking that the birds are ‘free to roam’ represents the worst kind of consumer deception.”

Dr Faruqi said the term ‘free to roam’ is a marketing thought bubble, not a genuine reference to animal welfare standards, .

The Federal Court finding was a good result for the the Australian Consumer and Competition Commission which instigated legal action against the two poultry producers in 2011.

The misleading claims not only deliberately deceived ethical-conscious consumers, but created unfair competition between poultry providers who paid additional costs to ensure their chickens were “free range” or “free to roam”, the ACCC Commissioner Sarah Court said.

“We know that consumers are willing to pay premium prices for foods that have credence claims about them, such as free to roam or organic,” Ms Court said.

These “free to roam” claims were plainly directed at enticing consumers, who may have had ethical concerns about the treatment of animals, she said.

The peak industry body for Australia’s chicken meat, The Australian Chicken Meat Federation, was also found to have engaged in false, misleading and deceptive conduct, by claiming on its website that chickens produced in Australia were ‘free to roam’ or able to ‘roam freely’ in large barns.

The companies all risk fines of $1.1 million per penalty.

Justice Tracey will hear penalty submissions on a date to be fixed.

Photo: LOUISE KENNERLEY

‘No advantage’ asylum policy needs explanation: Minister

New Immigration Minister Tony Burke admits the government’s ‘no advantage’ policy for asylum seekers requires further explanation. Photo: Andrew MearesLawyer warns of SAS legal issuesUse of SAS against Tampa ‘outrageous’
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The government’s “no-advantage” principle for asylum seekers who arrive by boat has not been fully defined almost a year after coming into effect, immigration minister Tony Burke admitted on Tuesday.

“I think there was a bit of a view that further explanation of the no-advantage principle wasn’t required,” Mr Burke said.

“I have a different view. I think further explanation is required and that’s why I’m driving it.”

Mr Burke said he supported the principle underlying the policy – in which asylum seekers arriving after August 13, 2012, were to be given no advantage over those who waited for a humanitarian visa in a refugee camp.

But, he said, questions around the length of time asylum seekers would wait, and how the policy would be implemented, had not yet been resolved.

“I don’t think the explanation is tight enough,” he said. “It’s not a hardening or a softening of the principle; it’s simply to provide a higher level of clarity on it.”

The government last week began processing the more than 22,000 asylum seekers who arrived after August 13.

Asked why it had taken nearly a year to define the policy, Mr Burke said: “Given the processing only of the people who are affected by it only began on Monday, I’m not particularly concerned by the intervening delay. And the commencement of that processing doesn’t mean that it will be a fast process before it’s concluded or before we get to the final part of it when visas are issued.”

Mr Burke said the delay in processing people who had arrived after August 13 had made little difference to their individual cases. And he rejected suggestions the delays had resulted in a backlog of cases before the Department of Immigration and Citizenship.

“Let’s not forget there’s a limited number of places available each year anyway, and those places have been being filled, so in terms of how long does it take for people ultimately to get visas, the delay has made, from what I can tell, no difference to that at all in terms of the actual visa processing, because that’s organised year on year.”

In a wide-ranging press conference in Canberra, Mr Burke called for a calm debate on asylum seekers, based on facts.

On the ABC on Monday night, Opposition Leader Tony Abbott said a Coalition government would “make a difference to “stop the boats”, vowing to “make a difference from day one”.

“We will stop the boats,” he said. “I believe we can stop the boats in a term of government and certainly we will be judged, should we win an election, on our performance in that term.”

Mr Burke hit out at Mr Abbott, accusing him of campaigning on a slogan rather than tackling a significant policy issue.

“The ‘stop the boats’ slogan, I think we heard it half a dozen times during the course of that interview and I just want to bring a few moments of reality back to this.”

He said it was meaningless to apply Mr Howard’s 2001 policy settings to the current asylum seeker trends, with global movement up, and people smugglers adapting their product to changing circumstances.

“If anyone actually thinks you can photocopy the rules of 2001 and more than a decade later people smugglers haven’t found a way around them, then they are kidding themselves.

“Tony Abbott knows it doesn’t work but thinks if he keeps repeating his slogan he’ll get away without having to go to any level of detail.”

Meanwhile, Nationals whip John “Whacker” Williams invoked terrorist attacks when he told Fairfax Media’s Breaking Politics program on Tuesday that he supported Australia’s right to control who came through its borders.

“We can’t have this industry just go on and people come here willy nilly and I will add that we must be aware that there are three men in jail who were going to shoot up the Holsworthy army base. Great intelligence captured those men, and we don’t want those things happening in our country.”

He said it was “outrageous” to conclude he was implying that all asylum seekers were potential terrorists.

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The original release of this article first appeared on the website of Hangzhou Night Net.

Telstra axes jobs in offshoring drive

Telstra rings in sweeping changes to its operations. Photo: Peter BraigTelstra has flagged it will cut up to 170 jobs as it shifts part of its back office operations to India, amid sweeping changes to the company’s operations.
杭州龙凤

It comes after a different announcement in May that it would reorganise its operational activities into five groups, three of which – Networks, IT Solutions and Customer Service Delivery – would be new.

It also said in May that those changes would affect about half of its 30,000 strong domestic workforce.But the job cuts announced today are part of a different restructure of operations.

Telstra staff were told of the potential cuts before the plan was made public.

David Burns, head of Telstra’s National Applications Services business, said the restructure and job cuts would affect its National Applications Services unit.

The NAS unit provides customers in government and business with ICT network-based products and services, including managed network services, security, cloud, and video conferencing services.

Mr Burns said the company’s current business model was inadequate and the offshoring needed to occur to promote domestic and international growth.

“Today we are announcing a proposal to establish global delivery centres with industry partners … in India to help us pursue international and growth aspirations for this [NAS] business,” Mr Burns said.

“Whilst no decision has been made to proceed as yet, our announcement today could affect existing Telstra employees,” he said.

If the decision goes ahead, up to 170 jobs would be offshored from October. It would take a period of six to 12 months to complete.

The roles would disappear from all major capital cities, including Hobart and Canberra.

The Indian jobs would in back office operations, including service operations, SLA reporting, business and infrastructure operations, and resource management.

Mr Burns said Telstra’s NAS business unit was identified as a “key growth” area for the telco, with the company having “some success” in its international strategy expanding through South East Asia, winning contracts such as Jetstar, Volvo, Fitness First and FedEx, he said.

It grew by 10.6 per cent in its last reportable period in December 2012, he said.

“So our need to expand our capability and support our growth in Asia is a need for now,” he said.

“We’re expecting to move those 170 roles across [to India], but what that becomes in the future based on growth and other opportunities I don’t have a number to share with you.”

He could not say where in India the jobs would be relocated to.

“We’ve just started to consult with our employees as of today,” he said.

The consultation period with Telstra employees and the union was expected take about three weeks.

Telstra share slipped 8 cents in the hours before the announcement, from $4.83 to $4.75.

They have since recovered slightly to $4.79.

The original release of this article first appeared on the website of Hangzhou Night Net.