The Horticulture Code of Conduct is a mandatory industry code under section 51AE of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (CCA).
The Horticulture Code was established in 2007 and exists to provide clarity and transparency of transactions between growers and traders of fresh fruit and vegetables. An updated Code was introduced in 2017 after detailed engagement with industry.
Under the Horticulture Code, growers and traders can resolve a dispute using any procedures they choose. However, the Horticulture Code has a dispute resolution procedure that must be followed if it is initiated by one of the parties.
The Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry has appointed the Deputy Secretary with responsibility for industry codes at the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry as mediation adviser under the Horticulture Code. If you would like more information about dispute resolution under the Horticulture Code please email Hortcode@aff.gov.au.
The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman (ASBFEO) can also assist in the resolution of disputes. Further information about the ASBFEO may be found at the ASBFEO website, or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 1300 650 460.
The Horticulture Code is enforced by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC). Guidance materials for growers and traders on the Horticulture Code is also available at the ACCC website.