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Shane Jones lambasts Fonterra at Fieldays

Chris Bramwell, Deputy Political Editor

Regional Development Minister Shane Jones has taken a swing at the dairy giant Fonterra, saying the cooperative has become disconnected from the farming community.

Mr Jones told Fonterra at the Fieldays agricultural event that it should focus less on politics and more on justifying the money it had lost overseas.

He said he has suggested to Minister of Agriculture Damien O'Connor that he consider restructuring Fonterra as its leadership had become full of its own self importance.

"Okay, the CEO has gone, well, that's only one party of the double-dutch that we'd have to put up with in Fonterra over the last nine years," he said.

"I thoroughly believe this, and I've said it elsewhere, as the CEO leaves Fonterra the chairman in quick order should catch the next cab out of town."

Mr Jones said he had been "bloody disappointed" that the leadership of Fonterra had not accepted that there was a new government.

"There is a new narrative, and I've had a gutsful of them believing that they're bigger than their writ really is."

The attack comes just a few months after Shane Jones was told off by the Prime Minister for launching a stinging attack on Air New Zealand.

Fonterra has been approached for comment.


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