The Ministry for Primary Industries must take urgent action to protect New Zealand’s $150 million organic food and beverage industry by establishing a certification regime, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says.
“Despite working with Organics Aotearoa on the issue for more than a year, the Ministry today said it wasn’t a priority and wouldn’t hold further discussions on a regime until 2017.
The Government has opened New Zealand’s borders to biosecurity risks and its rethinking of bag screening at airports is an admission of failure, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says.
Nathan Guy today announced a review of biosecurity systems in the wake of numerous fruitfly outbreaks after a decision to stop x-raying 100 per cent of bags four years ago.
It is time for the Government to show leadership and take action on the sound findings in the red meat industry report released today, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says.
“This report – initiated by the farmer-led Meat Industry Excellence group – confirms overcapacity, inefficient transportation and a lack of market co-ordination is costing the industry hundreds of millions of dollars a year.
Reports of a threat to poison infant formula should be seen for what they are – an idiotic and extreme protest that puts our economy at risk, Labour’s Primary Industries and Food Safety spokesperson Damien O’Connor says.
“Food safety and the health of children is the highest priority for all New Zealand’s food producers and exporters.
A decision today to settle with Westpac Banking Corp out of court removes the Commerce Commission’s obligation to protect the rights of farmers, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says.
“From a farming perspective, the Commerce Commission is about as useless as tits on a bull.
An Auditor-General report into the Government’s Primary Growth Partnership programmes has found there is little to show for the $323 million taxpayer-funded investment, some of which went to National’s mates, Labour’s Primary Industries spokesperson Damien O’Connor says.
“The report says the Government rushed into establishing the programme against official advice after it dismantled Labour’s Fast Forward Fund. The Ministry of Primary Industries was understaffed to deliver the programme and unable to clearly set the funding criteria.
The Government must ensure foreign investors uphold their commitment to add value to sensitive New Zealand assets* they purchase, after new figures show National has declined just 1.5 per cent of all applications, Labour’s Land Information spokesperson Stuart Nash says.
"Figures compiled by the Parliamentary Library show that since taking office in 2008, the National Government has rejected 11 applications but approved 724 sales of sensitive assets.