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

 


Guy: Speech to GIA signing with NZ Pork

Nathan Guy

22 JULY, 2014

Speech to GIA signing with NZ Pork

It’s great to be here today to witness the signing of the Government Industry Agreement Deed by the New Zealand Pork Industry.

This is a historic day. It’s the result of the hard work over several years of both industry and government to realise the benefits of working in partnership.

There is a simple but important principle behind the GIA: by working together, we are stronger.

This agreement means we can share our expertise, experience and knowledge to make joint decisions on biosecurity readiness and response.

Those with a direct stake in biosecurity can now be directly involved in decision making and funding.

In May this year, the Kiwifruit industry became the first signatory to the GIA Deed. I’m very pleased to have the pork industry onboard as the first animal sector industry into GIA.

Biosecurity is the responsibility of everyone – including industry, government and the wider community. We all have skin in the game.

So thank you for coming onboard and I look forward to building a stronger relationship, and a stronger biosecurity system.

The next step forward in the GIA process is an Operational Agreement that will detail the readiness and response activities we will jointly focus our efforts on.

I’ve always said that biosecurity is my number one priority as Minister and that won’t be changing.

MPI is beefing up border protection with 125 new quarantine inspectors trained over the last 18 months, and 12 new x-ray machines at our international airports. We also have five new dog detector teams.

This year the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) Budget has increased by over $17 million with a focus on strengthening biosecurity and food safety systems.

Last month I also announced a new $65 million biocontainment laboratory will be built at Wallaceville in Wellington. It will replace the existing facility, and play a key role in responding to disease outbreaks, protecting public health and providing international trade assurances about New Zealand’s animal disease status.

Animal Welfare issues

Since I’m here at your annual conference, its worth saying a few words about another important issue that’s been in the news lately.

Like most of you, I was disappointed at the living conditions of pigs shown recently on TVNZ’s Sunday programme.

This was well below the standards that New Zealanders expect, and my office has received many letters on this issue.

As a farmer myself, I know that the farms and practices shown are not typical of the New Zealand pig industry. I know that the vast majority of farmers care for their animals and do a good job of looking after them.

Sadly, in any field there will occasionally be isolated examples that impact on the rest of the industry.

But we should never underestimate the importance of animal welfare, not just to ourselves and our animals, but to markets and consumers.

Clearly there is work to be done. The public needs to be reassured that your industry takes this seriously, is pulling your socks up and acting on any concerns.

I’ve met with MPI and New Zealand Pork soon after this issue arose, and I’m pleased they have agreed to look at how they can work together more effectively on farm inspections.

I’m also pleased to hear you have set aside some time in your conference to discuss animal welfare issues.

Government policies on animal welfare

The Government decided in 2010 that sow stalls may no longer be used from 3 December 2015, and your industry is making good progress toward removing sow stalls.

The writing is on the wall for farrowing crates as well. The Pigs Code of Welfare sends a strong signal that alternatives to farrowing crates need to be found and adopted in the near future.

Research is now underway into alternative methods, looked at by Massey University and funded through the Sustainable Farming Fund.

I believe we need to move quicker on this. I have requested the National Animal Welfare Advisory Committee (NAWAC) to investigate what options are available and make recommendations to me next year.

As part of this work, I expect they will come back with a firm date for when traditional farrowing crates will need to be banned.

I encourage you to see this as an opportunity as well as a challenge, and a chance to position ourselves as world leaders in pig farming.

NAWAC will be consulting with your industry during this process and any decision will need to provide enough of a transition period. Otherwise it could mean farms go out of business and we end up importing more pork from countries where we have no control over animal welfare standards.

Overall, I’m proud of our track record as a Government on animal welfare.

Penalties and sentences in the Animal Welfare Act have increased. The penalty for willful ill-treatment was increased from three to five years imprisonment with a maximum fine of $100,000 for individuals and $500,000 for a body corporate.

We also have allocated an additional $8.2 million to double the number of animal welfare inspectors. This enabled MPI to double the number of animal welfare inspectors, and to also provide funding to the SPCA for its enforcement work.

This year we’ve banned the use of blunt force to euthanize bobby calves, except in emergencies, and a shark finning ban is likely to come into effect later this year.

We also have the Animal Welfare Amendment Bill before Parliament, which will make the 1999 Act clearer, more transparent and easier to enforce.

The Bill enables regulations to be made that enable a tiered enforcement scheme of offences, penalties, and infringements

The Bill which was reported back to the House by the Primary Production Select Committee in June 2014 and is awaiting it’s second reading in the House.

I understand that MPI intends to work closely with the pork industry to develop the new regulations following the passing of the Bill.

Closing comments

I want to finish by stressing that while your industry faces challenges, it also has opportunites and a positive future ahead.

With the GIA signing, today is the beginning of a new partnership between your industry and MPI to build a stronger, more effective biosecurity system.

It’s also a key step in building a better relationship between the pork industry and the government.

Thank you again to everyone for their hard work in getting us to this point, and I look forward to the journey ahead.


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Populism And Labour 2017

For many people on the centre-left, populism is a dirty word, and a shorthand for the politics of bigotry. In this country, it has tended to be equated with the angry legions of New Zealand First. Who knew they were not just a reactionary spasm, but the wave of the future?

Certainly, at the end of this week, the next US President will have won office (at least in part) thanks to his proven ability at (a) scapegoating refugees and migrants (b) wooing neo-Nazis and racial supremacists (c) attacking journalists and judges (d) threatening to jail his opponents (e) urging nuclear proliferation and (e) by promising to restrict women’s rights to control their own fertility.

On the face of that campaign record, there wouldn’t seem to be much in common between Donald Trump and say, Spain’s centre-left populist party, Podemos. Yet arguably, the similarities could be instructive for the Labour/Green partnership here. More>>

 
 

Oxfam: 30% Of NZ Owns Less Wealth Than Our Two Richest Men

The research also reveals that the richest one per cent have 20 per cent of the wealth in New Zealand, while 90 per cent of the population owns less than half of the nation’s wealth. The research forms part of a global report released to coincide with this week’s annual meeting of political and business leaders at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. More>>

ALSO:

Hospitals: Resident Doctors Set To Strike Again

Despite discussions between the DHBs and NZRDA over safer hours for resident doctors progressing during the last week, the strike planned for next week appears set to proceed. More>>

ALSO:

Not So Super Fund: More Burning Ethical Questions For Steven Joyce

Greens: Radio New Zealand reported this morning that the New Zealand Superfund has $77 million invested in 47 coal companies that the Norwegian Government’s Pension Fund – the largest sovereign fund in the world – has blacklisted. More>>

Activism: Greenpeace Intercepts World’s Biggest Seismic Oil Ship

Greenpeace crew have made contact with the world’s biggest seismic oil ship after travelling 50 nautical miles on two rigid-hulled inflatables off the coast of Wairarapa... Greenpeace radioed the master of the Amazon Warrior to deliver an open letter of protest signed by over 60,000 New Zealanders. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: Why Tax Cuts In 2017 Would Be A (Proven) Bad Idea

Ever since the world fell prey to the mullahs of the free market in the 1980s, no amount of real world evidence has managed dispel one key tenet of their economic faith. Namely, the idea that if you cut income taxes and taxes on small business, a wave of individual enterprise and entrepreneurial energy will thus be unleashed, profits will rise and – hey bingo! – the tax cuts will soon be paying for themselves ... More>>

Liquor Sponsorship: Researchers Call For Ban On Alcohol Sponsorship Of Sport

“Due to alcohol sponsorship of sport, New Zealanders, including children, were exposed to up to 200 ads per hour they watched televised sport, and people watching football and tennis saw alcohol ads for almost half of each game,” says Associate Professor Signal. More>>

ALSO:

Mt Albert: Ardern For Labour, Genter For Greens

At the close of nominations, Jacinda Ardern was the sole nomination received for the position of Labour’s candidate for the Mt Albert by-election, says Labour General Secretary, Andrew Kirton. More>>

ALSO:

Earlier:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news