Outrage after farmer finds Australian beef cheaper in Japan than at home

A photo showing more affordable Australian beef in Japan stores has gone viral on social media.

Outrage after farmer finds Australian beef cheaper in Japan than at home
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During a visit to Japan, New South Wales farmer Andrew Dunlop uncovered a surprising fact: Australian beef is more affordable in Japanese stores than in local Australian supermarkets. Dunlop repeatedly made this discovery at a discount retailer in Tokyo.

According to the Australian Beef Association, Australian beef cubes are sold for $18.35 per kilogram in Tokyo, whereas a similar product retails for approximately $20 per kilogram in Australia. Thinly sliced beef stir fry costs $19.80 in Japan, compared to between $20 and $25 in Australia.

A rump steak is priced at about $28 in Japan and $29.80 in Australia.

Dunlop expressed his confusion over the price disparity despite the added costs of international shipping and tariffs.

"These prices ask more questions of me than they answer," he remarked.

Coles, one of Australia's major supermarket chains, claimed that the price comparisons were not accurate.

"Think of it like buying a car: if you pay for a high-end, premium brand versus an entry-level brand, yes, it's a car, but the costs and the retails are completely different," explained Coles chief operating officer Matt Swindells.

"We understand the importance of value more than ever, and with that comes a responsibility to provide trusted prices."

The discrepancy may be influenced by discount retailing and increased export competition, yet the beef industry maintains that domestic supermarket pricing lacks transparency.

"As a consequence of that, neither the producer nor the consumer is getting a good deal," Dunlop added.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission is currently investigating claims of price gouging by major supermarkets, with a report on price-setting practices expected later this year. Supermarkets have denied these allegations, attributing higher prices to food inflation instead.

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  • By Avi Yemini

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