Photos of the Day Kale Biggs - Woodburn cane harvesters
Photos of the Day Kale Biggs - Woodburn cane harvesters Kale Biggs

Farmers call for wage reduction

FARMERS have called for both major parties to guarantee wide reforms to industrial relations and rule out any new penalty rates for the industry.

The National Farmers Federation called on the parties yesterday to implement changes recommended by the recent Productivity Commission workplace inquiry.

The group wants an end to the four-yearly modern award review, as well as modern awards to be recast and more incentives for enterprise bargaining in agriculture.

NFF president Brent Finlay said while the backpacker tax had been a big election issue, more "commonsense measures" were needed.

The former Abbott government pledged not to change workplace relations laws until its second term.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has been quiet on the issue during the election campaign, given a union-led ad campaign trying to drive fears of WorkChoices-style reforms.

Mr Finlay said he also wanted the Coalition and Labor to confirm they would not resurrect the backpacker tax.

Labor agriculture spokesman Joel Fitzgibbon has said there will be no backpacker tax under a Shorten government.

Under pressure over plans to hike the tax, the government has promised a six-month review of its potential impacts.