Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Government remains blind to organic wisdom

10 November, 2003
Government remains blind to organic wisdom

It seems everybody realises New Zealand's huge potential to become an organic produce superpower - except the Government, Green MP Ian Ewen-Street said today.

Mr Ewen-Street warned that the organic sector's strategic plan and launch of national standards and the announcement by Japanese company Nikken Seil to create an organic business park near Oamaru could be undermined by the Government's stubborn pursuit of genetically engineered organisms.

"We've seen a momentous week for the organics sector, with the launch of national standards and a strategy that is set to earn New Zealand $1 billion annually within 10 years," said Mr Ewen-Street, the Green Organics spokesperson.

"To top that off, Nikken want to invest $50 million in North Otago to create an ecological business park to create sustainable farming and a safe and healthy food supply. However, the huge potential that these developments represent could be seriously undermined by the threat of GE organism in the food chain.

"There is a huge demand worldwide for GE free produce but those overseas markets would simply dry up overnight if there was a hint of GE contamination in our organic produce. Our organic food would be utterly rejected, along with any thoughts of a billion-dollar industry.

"It exposes the stupidity of the Government in funding GE research which, to my mind, is simply throwing good money after bad. It should follow the lead of Nikken and invest in sustainable sciences such as ecology and organic agriculture.

"If GE scientists leave New Zealand, then so be it. Their departure will make New Zealand a far more attractive proposition for the world's best ecological and sustainable scientists."

Mr Ewen-Street said it was pleasing to see that Green Party budget initiatives four years ago have helped lead to the developments of the past week.

"The Greens effectively planted the seed for this four years ago so I'm personally very pleased to see the germination of this strategy," said Mr Ewen-Street.

"The strategy provides a mechanism for greater cooperation between those in the organic sector, which to this point has been a widely dispersed group of small-scale farmers. It also brings bigger players, such as Fonterra and Heinz Wattie's, into the organic fold in a manner that could boost the traditional small market producers without overwhelming them."


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Also, Loan Interest: Productivity Commission On Tertiary Education

Key recommendations include better quality control; making it easier for students to transfer between courses; abolishing University Entrance; enabling tertiary institutions to own and control their assets; making it easier for new providers to enter the system; and facilitating more and faster innovation by tertiary education providers... More>>


Higher Payments: Wellington Regional Council Becomes A Living Wage Employer

Councillor Sue Kedgley said she was delighted that the Wellington Regional Council unanimously adopted her motion to become a Living Wage employer, making it the first regional council in New Zealand to do so. More>>


Scoop Images:
Dame Patsy Reddy Sworn In As Governor-General

This morning Dame Patsy Reddy was sworn in as the New Zealand Realm’s 21st Governor-General. The ceremony began with a pōwhiri to welcome Dame Patsy and her husband Sir David Gascoigne to Parliament. More>>


Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>


With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>


Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news