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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 11 Hansard (21 October) . . Page.. 3438 ..

MS TUCKER (continuing):

I therefore put up this motion to amend Mr Moore's Food Regulation Amendment. Given that the battery egg legislation was originally put up by the Greens, I am disappointed Mr Moore did not seek my views on our original intention with the labelling before he released this regulation. We might not of had to have had this debate.

Mr Moore: I did.

MS TUCKER: Mr Moore says he did. Mr Moore wrote me a letter saying he would consult me further about the regulations. So he did write me one letter, but he neglected to consult me further. He did contact me, I acknowledge that. My amendments to the regulations are straightforward. My first two amendments are more in the nature of editorial corrections to make the label more readable. The first amendment and its words in the regulation would have allowed the label to read, "egg, battery, cage", which I think most people would agree makes very little sense. The second amendment just aligns the label with the fact that eggs are always sold in groups and not individually.

The third amendment is just a standard part of my motion. It sets out clearly what would be regarded as a conspicuous label. Most of this wording was provided by Health Department officials I met with last week about the labelling. Due to the concerns raised by myself and animal welfare groups about the labelling when it was first announced, I understand that officials have been meeting with the various stakeholders and have been considering alternatives, waiting for the regulation. But it does seem to be an odd process to have this consultation after the regulation has been released.

I am therefore taking the opportunity, during the disallowance period for this regulation, to get the regulation right rather than waiting for the Minister to decide whether or not to put out another regulation some time down the track. Because we have done that other tidying up around the regulation, I imagine Mr Moore will find that useful as well. No-one could possibly argue with those two amendments. Just to clarify the "egg, battery, cage" - - -

Mr Moore : You watch.

MS TUCKER: Oh, we like, "egg, battery, cage", do we? Okay, Mr Moore is going to argue that is good.

I am therefore taking the opportunity during the disallowance period for this regulation to get the regulation right. I look forward to the Assembly's support for this motion. The Assembly agreed that it wanted egg labelling when it passed the original legislation. Mr Moore does speak so often and well - and I mean that genuinely - about the need for proper labelling. From the comments he has just made, it sounds as though I am not going to get the support. But I would like to see him support this, because it is really just tidying up something he normally would say he does support.

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