Farmers and small business would get tax incentives for redirecting unwanted food to local charities, under a new bill to be put before the federal Parliament by WA Liberal Senator Dean Smith. Source: The West Australian.
Senator Smith will introduce a private members bill this month which he says if passed would “provide urgent food relief to those at risk of going hungry as the cost-of-living crisis bites”.
“Local food charities are crying out for more food donations to respond to families struggling under the cost-of-living crisis,” Senator Smith said.
“This bill will incentivise farmers, meat processors and small business to donate food to charities, which would otherwise end up in landfill.
Under the new tax arrangements, small and medium businesses, including grocery shops and family farms, would be eligible for a 20 per cent cash back on all costs associated with food donations.
Larger operators would receive a 10 per cent credit on their tax bill.
The tax donation would not apply to individuals.
It would mean that instead of throwing away surplus or imperfect produce, farmers and others would be incentivised to give it to charities such as Foodbank.
According to Foodbank, 7.6 million tonnes of food is being wasted by the nation each year – 70 per cent of it able to be eaten.
Foodbank Australia Chief Operating Officer Sarah Pennell said the incentive has the potential to provide the equivalent of 100 million meals a year.
Cost-of-living crisis: Move to provide food relief for the needy as desperate families struggle (By Joe Spagnolo, The West Australian)