TasFarmers issues urgent scam alert: Farmers duped in hay scams

21 June 2024

The peak body for Tasmanian farmers is alerting agricultural producers to an alarming rise in scam activities targeting their community. TasFarmers has received reports revealing a troubling trend where farmers seeking to purchase hay are falling victim to substantial financial scams.

President of TasFarmers, Ian Sauer, said that these schemes typically involve requests for deposits or payments for feed that are never delivered, a deceptive practice aimed at defrauding farmers in need of hay.
"We must raise awareness about these fraudulent activities that prey on farmers in hard times through deceptive offers to sell feed and fodder," said Mr Sauer.
“These people operate by advertising hay and asking for a deposit and then never deliver, nothing comes of it.

"People need to exercise extreme caution with this type of purchase. The offers often appear legitimate initially, but once money is paid, issues with delivery arise and even excuses for delayed delivery may seem plausible.
"We urge farmers to be vigilant and cautious. Firstly, being asked to pay a deposit should raise a red flag. It's crucial to confirm the source of the hay and the expected delivery date. Secondly, verify the credentials of the seller and seek third-party endorsements. Remember, using resources like Google can be helpful.
“This type of predatory behaviour can’t be allowed to go on, with such dry conditions right now many farmers are under serious financial and mental stress.
"We have written to the Police Commissioner regarding this issue, requesting additional information on their actions and strategies to address this matter.
“Some of these people are all too often well known to police and the court system in Tasmania, if members do experience these problems, they should let us know,” Mr Sauer added.