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Dirty Dairying Debate Derailed

Friday 28 Jun 2002

Unhelpful rhetoric is diverting the important debate about how to actually fix the problem facing NZ dairy farmers and their care of the environment, ACT Rural Affairs Spokesman MP Owen Jennings said today.

"The facts are now well established from an environmental point of view and dairy farmers know full well the importance of a clean image in the market place. It is now time to focus calmly on resolving the problem in a practical and feasible manner.

"Regulations and heavy fines are not the starting point. Education, encouragement, practical help, and sensible solutions are a priority.

"There is a tendency among some Councils to apply a regulatory and punishment regime. This is only appropriate to the very few extreme cases. The vast bulk of dairy farmers are just as willing to be part of a positive action as any environmentalist.

"Fish & Game should back off their pseudo-outrage and unhelpful rhetoric. It is also time for Federated Farmers to join their membership on the ground and work through the solutions that they know full well will work," Mr Jennings said.


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