Fall in dairy price a clarion call for diversification

The latest drop in the dairy price shows a rebound is not coming soon and the Government needs get moving on diversification, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson.


“The latest fall in global dairy trade auction is a further clarion call for diversification of the economy. National’s claim the price drop will have a limited fallout ignores yesterday’s MYOB Business Monitor showing that over a fifth of small businesses have been affected.

“Regions are bearing the brunt of National’s complacency, especially those with a strong link to dairy industries


“The global dairy glut has been warned about since 2014. It’s not going to bottom out soon as John Key said in November that year. These are tough times.


“New Zealanders are tired of the complacency of Bill English, saying he is not ‘overly concerned’.


“Farmers and rural communities need our support, but at the same time the economy is clearly too reliant on the dairy industry. National must take its share of the blame for actively encouraging farmers to convert and intensify despite the cyclic nature of commodities.


“Steven Joyce and Bill English should apologise and get on with diversifying the economy to establish flourishing new industries that create good jobs and opportunities.


“New Zealanders need a government that is an active partner in growing the economy and preparing for the future, not the bunch of distracted bystanders we currently have,” says Grant Robertson.