The Informer: Australia Post delivery ban hits regional producers

Aus Post ban a blow to regional producers

Some of Australia's hardest-hit businesses have been dealt another blow after Australia Post announced it will no longer deliver perishable food.

From June 30, the government-owned mail corporation will no longer accept items such as meats, seafood, dairy, eggs, frozen meals, fresh meal kits, small goods, fruit and vegetables.

Australia Post said "complex food safety requirements" between states and territories forced its hand.

Lockdowns and border closures forced many regional food producers to reinvent their businesses to stay afloat and they quickly became dependent on Australia Post to deliver products to customers across the country.

Fresh meal kits were all the rage during Melbourne's lockdowns, with the innovation giving consumers the chance to eat from their favourite restaurants while mostly being confined to their homes and provided much-needed support to the hospitality industry.

In March, Australia Post announced there was double-digit growth across the business in every state and territory last year.

"Leading categories were Food and Liquor and Home & Garden products, each up 77 per cent and 70 per cent YOY respectively, as people spent more days at home and invested their time on domestic projects," the statement said.

Junee Licorice and Chocolate Factory general manager Rhiannon Druce told the Daily Advertiser she was still trying to figure out how the business would be affected after hiring staff specifically to pack the 5000 to 10,000 deliveries they send every year by Australia Post.

"We are trying to figure it out as Australia Post has not given us a definition of whether we will fall into the new prohibited goods category for perishables," she said.

The businesses that are being impacted by the delivery ban will need to find an alternative and cost-effective delivery service or they risk losing a revenue stream that became so essential during 2020.

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