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Dairy Farmers send clear Message to Fonterra

Dairy Farmers send clear Message to Fonterra

Dairy farmers are clear that Fonterra should be accountable to their supplier shareholders not the other way round, says Dairy Farmers of New Zealand Chairman Kevin Wooding.

DFNZ have surveyed a random sample of its members on the Joint Fonterra / Ministry for the Environment / MAF / Regional Council Initiative "Clean Water initiative

"Fonterra is abusing it's privileged monopoly position obtained through it's exemption under the Commerce Act by proposing commitments which can only be delivered through conditions applied to suppliers.

"86% of respondents to date consider that Fonterra does not have a mandate to propose an environmental accord with Councils and Government prior to seeking a mandate from shareholders.

"86% of respondents believe Fonterra does not have a mandate to ask Councils to implement changes without undertaking a first schedule process under the Resource Management Act, which would require a consultation process.

"71% of respondents felt that Fonterra should not make standards exceeding those required in regional plans a condition of supply without some commercial incentive for the producer.

"Several respondents noted the fact that most dairy farmers are already implementing sound environmental management practices.

"DFNZ supports a positive approach to environmental stewardship based on education, communication, peer pressure and the ability of Regional Councils to enforce compliance. Fonterra should support initiatives that promote industry good activities and take consideration of regional and individual farm variations.

"Fonterra's involvement in the Environmental Accord duplicates functions already performed by Local Governments. DFNZ members are clear in their message to Fonterra - remember you are a dairy co-operative not a quasi-regulatory body."

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