Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 


Work Starts on Wilkinson’s Mass Medication Plan

Wednesday 8 July 2009

Work Starts on Hon Kate Wilkinson’s Mass Medication Plan

Bakers are beginning preparations to comply with the Government’s plan to mass-mediate all New Zealanders with folic acid from September.

The Zealand Association of Bakers announced today that it will advise members to begin preparations to implement the plan, having failed to convince Food Safety Minister Kate Wilkinson of the risks involved in the exercise.

“We are deeply disappointed to announce this, but we need to begin preparations now to be compliant with this government mandated regulation,’’ said Laurie Powell, President of the Bakers Association.

“Minister Wilkinson’s food standard will medicate 4.4 million New Zealanders to save between one and three people from a neural tube defect. The benefits will be small as New Zealand already has one of the lowest rates of NTDs in the world.

“Our industry has suggested a very credible and effective alternative to mass medication by offering to voluntarily fortify a significant range of breads aimed at the target audience, along with an appropriate awareness advertising campaign. This has been rejected,’’ Powell said.

“The Minister’s plan is bad science and defies logic. The Minister recently confirmed that the pregnant women she is targeting will need to eat 11 slices of bread a day to get their recommended dose of folic acid.

“Women statistically aren’t big bread eaters. Targeting the small number of women at risk with folic acid supplements is a much more effective strategy than blasting the entire New Zealand population.

“We understand that her reason for championing this medical experiment is to keep Australia happy. Telling New Zealanders to “eat up for Australia” is not going to be electorally popular.

“In May, Hon Kate Wilkinson admitted that “87% of New Zealanders did not want” folic acid in bread, so many Kiwis will scratch their heads to understand why she is allowing the standard to roll out when the health benefits are so miniscule.

“In the last election she personally campaigned against nanny state government. Now as Minister she is championing a food standard that will eradicate freedom of choice, dose all New Zealanders without their consent and overlook the importance of personal responsibility for pregnant women. It’s hard to reconcile,” Powell said.

“A prudent Minister, exercising her authority under the Food Act, should at least delay implementation until the various concerns raised have been laid to rest or confirmed as both the governments in the United Kingdom and Ireland have done.

“There is still time for the Minister to act in the interests of the wider community and adopt the cooperative, targeted and voluntary initiative offered by our industry. We urge her to do so.’’

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Finance: Major Campaign To End "Gross Overtaxation Of Savings"

The campaign – which includes a special web site through which New Zealanders can e-mail their own and other MPs and party leaders – is backed by Age Concern, Consumer NZ, the Financial Services Council and the Taxpayers’ Union. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Leighton-Led WGP To Build, Manage Transmission Gully

The Wellington Gateway Partnership, led by a unit of ASX-listed Leighton Holdings, has won the $1 billion contract to build the Transmission Gully road north of Wellington. More>>

ALSO:

Gareth Morgan: The Government’s Fresh Water Policy – Revisited

Fresh water quality is the latest area to be in the sights of Gareth Morgan and his research organisation The Morgan Foundation... They found that the fresh water policy was a bit murkier than the Environment Minister let on. More>>

ALSO:

Interest Rates: RBNZ Hikes OCR To 3.5%, ‘Period Of Assessment’ Now Needed

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler raised the official cash rate as expected, while signalling a pause in rate hikes to assess the impact of moves so far this year. The kiwi dollar sank after Wheeler said its strength was “unjustified” and that the currency could have “a significant fall.” More>>

ALSO:

Fonterra: Canpac Site 'Resize' To Focus More On Paediatrics

Fonterra is looking at realigning its packing operations at Canpac, in the Waikato, to focus more on paediatric nutritionals... The proposed changes could mean around 110 roles may not be required at the site which currently employs 330. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Postie Plus Brand Gets 2nd Chance With Well-Funded Pepkor

The Postie Plus brand is getting a new lease of life after South Africa’s Pepkor bought the failed retailer’s assets out of administration and said it will use its purchasing power to reduce costs of stock and fatten margins. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
Computer Power Plus

Standards New Zealand

Standards New Zealand
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Business
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news