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


Part A of WPC Ministerial Inquiry initiated

Hon Nathan Guy

Minister for Primary Industries

Hon Nikki Kaye

Minister for Food Safety

7 May 2014 Media Statement
Part A of WPC Ministerial Inquiry initiated

Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy and Food Safety Minister Nikki Kaye said today that the final part (Part A) of the Government Inquiry into the Whey Protein Concentrate (WPC) Contamination Incident will begin on 12 May.

“Part A will examine how the potentially contaminated whey protein concentrate entered the New Zealand international markets and how this was subsequently addressed,” Mr Guy says.

“Part A could not begin until the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) compliance investigation was complete, sentencing had occurred, and the appeal period had expired.

“Inquiry Chair Miriam Dean QC has been conducting preliminary work with the Department of Internal Affairs on a suitable date to begin the inquiry to ensure availability of other inquiry members and that a secretariat is available,” Ms Kaye says.

Ministers have received a letter from the Chair, noting that:

“The Inquiry’s work will take place against the background of the current civil litigation arising from the incident. In these circumstances, it will be especially important to develop processes that are fair to all participants, while also ensuring the matters in the terms of reference are fully addressed in a timely manner.

As you know, the terms of reference require you to specify a date for the final report to be submitted to you. In light of the parallel litigation, and the need to consult with key stakeholders, the Inquiry requires some time to consider and advise you of its views as to a realistic timeframe for Part A. I intend to be in a position to give you that advice by the end of May 2014.”

“This incident has been New Zealand’s largest food safety scare and while there is a need to ensure the inquiry is completed as soon as possible, this needs to be balanced against giving the inquiry team time to take a considered look at what happened and to enable a fair process to all parties involved.

“The Inquiry reported on Parts B and C of the Terms of Reference in December of last year and the Government responded by accepting all 29 recommendations in principle.

“The first inquiry report was focused on our overall dairy food safety regulatory system. It concluded that while our food safety regulatory model is consistent with international principles and is among the best in the world, there were areas where strengthening should occur as the greatest challenges lie ahead.

“Our Government announced a response package to the recommendations in December that includes between $8-12 million in funding.

“We are pleased that over the past five months we have been able to progress most of the recommendations including the Food Safety Science and Research Centre, the Food Safety Assurance Advisory Council, the traceability working group and work on the Food Bill,” Ms Kaye says.

The Government’s inquiry is headed by Miriam Dean CNZM QC, assisted by Tony Nowell CNZM and Dr Anne Astin PSM and includes independent peer reviewer Professor Alan Reilly, Chief Executive of the Food Safety Authority of Ireland.

A summary of the Government’s response and progress on each of the recommendations can be found here: http://www.beehive.govt.nz/sites/all/files/WPC_Recommendations_table_May_2014_update.pdf

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines



Labour: Little Announces New Shadow Cabinet

“Labour had an impressive intake of fresh faces after last year’s election and newest MPs have now had a year to show what they’re made of. This reshuffle rewards hard work and continues my drive to renew our Caucus line up." More>>


Because Reasons: Someone Reckons David Seymour Is Politician Of The Year

Trans Tasman's 11th annual Roll Call has thrown a curve ball this year, ignoring the likes of John Key, Bill English, and Winston Peters to pick its politician of the year from the ranks of the new generation. More>>


Whaling: NZ Deeply Disappointed By Japan's Decision

“New Zealand is strongly opposed to whaling in the Southern Ocean. We call on Japan to take heed of the 2014 International Court of Justice decision and international scientific advice concerning their whaling activities.” More>>


Relevant Consents Gained: Government Unveils RMA Reform Package

The government has formally hauled down the flag on its attempts to alter the balance of environmental and economic priorities in the Resource Management Act, unveiling a 180-page Resource Legislation Amendment Bill containing reforms that have been largely endorsed by most political parties. More>>


Closing Schools And Such: Interim Redcliffs Decision Announced

“While the school’s board has argued that circumstances that could give rise to potential disruption are extremely unlikely, advice from technical experts has shown these concerns cannot be ruled out." More>>


Jane Kelsey: High Court Can’t Make Groser Provide TPPA Information Faster

‘This week we went back to court to challenge Trade Minister Groser’s stalling tactics over the release of information on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement negotiations, following a High Court order that he reconsider the Official Information Act request I made last January’, said University of Auckland law professor Jane Kelsey, first applicant in the case. More>>

Werewolf 58: No Climate For Change

The last time the global community tried to take collective action on climate change the world’s leaders finally came to agree that every not-too-onerous effort should be made to hold global warming to 2°C above the pre-industrial average. At Paris, all 150 participant countries nations will have put forward their pledges... On the information available, New Zealand's is the second weakest contribution of any nation in the developed world. More>>


Lambton Quay Shutdown: Object Was Made To Look Like Bomb

Police cordoned off part of Lambton Quay Wednesday afternoon, saying that a suspicious package had been found. Buildings were evacuated and buses were detoured. The army’s explosive ordnance disposal unit was brought to the Quay. More>>


Public Sector Still Shrinking: Record Low Number Of 'Backroom Bureaucrats'

Ongoing restraint in the public sector and a focus on better frontline services has seen a further reduction in the number of core Government employees, State Services Minister Paula Bennett says. More>>


Get More From Scoop



More RSS  RSS News AlertsNews Alerts
Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news