Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

Govt suppressing New Zealand’s organic producers

Soil & Health Association of New Zealand (Est. 1941)

Publishers of ORGANIC NZ

MEDIA RELEASE

For: Immediate Release
Attn: Agriculture and Consumer Reporters
Date: 2-6-2005

The Soil and Health Association of New Zealand wants to know when the government is going to stop suppressing New Zealand’s organic producers.

Not only is the government holding back serious support to the environmentally sustainable organic sector, but it kicks it in the guts with its attack on the international GE liability provisions of the Cartogena Protocol, said Soil & Health Co-chair and spokesperson Steffan Browning.

Strong liability provisions are essential to safeguarding organic production from GE contamination. Soil & Health had submitted to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade ahead of MFAT’s destructive trip to the Montreal Cartogena talks.

“It is embarrassing to know that the USA puppeteers have the New Zealand knowledge wave government’s support for limited to zero liability for GE. So much for our Clean Green image.”

The Soil and Health Association of New Zealand and BioGro are members of IFOAM (International Federation of Organic Agricultural Movements), the principle international organic umbrella group.

IFOAM calls for strict liability to be imposed for the introduction of GMOs. To insure that the costs of injuries resulting from defective products are borne by the manufacturer that put such products on the market rather than by the injured persons who are powerless to protect themselves,
strict liability for GMOs is warranted.

Strict liability ensures that organic farmers and consumers receive protection from problems of proof inherent in pursuing negligence, placing the burden of loss on manufacturers rather than injured parties who are powerless to protect themselves. IFOAM applauds the inclusion of a GMO liability regime in the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety, an idea that originated from African nations and other Third World nations, and is opposed by the USA
and Canada. [ May 30, 2005 ]

New Zealand has added to a list of liability options under consideration at Montreal, ranging from legally binding agreement to a combination of binding and non-binding agreement.
“NZ Foreign Affairs added a number 6 – no instrument, that is no agreement, and that has to be one of the biggest pokes in the eye to any non GE producer, organic or conventional,” said Soil & Health’s Steffan Browning.

Environment Minister Marian Hobbs’ knows full well that there are gaps in liability provision and New Zealand has already suffered from GE contamination.

Added to this poke at organic viability is Government’s lack of progress in the funding of the new organic sector organisation Organics Aotearoa New Zealand (OANZ). OANZ is to be the sectors collective voice, something that the government has supported in concept. Now that the structure is resolved, Government money is nowhere to be seen and appears to have been continually tagged to the progress of State Owned Enterprise, Agriquality’s level of involvement in OANZ and the sectors meeting purely commercial models.

Soil & Health had looked to the budget in hope that the government would do something meaningful for the organic sector as an example of government commitment to sustainability in NZ.
Clearly Governments commitment to sustainability is veneer thin, according to Steffan Browning.
“While the dairy giants call for even higher production from over exploited animals and soils, our rivers and lakes are becoming increasingly polluted, yet organics has solutions. Government knows this and pays lip service to the sustainability problems but ignores the real solution. By giving the new organic sector organisation, OANZ, a real boost, New Zealands primary production can begin to address sustainability problems while maintaining economic viability.

To operate in a truly sustainable way with out fear of GE contamination is surely the desire of most of New Zealand producers and the sooner the better that organics is supported to show the way, said Soil & Health spokesperson Steffan Browning.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Werewolf: What Does Winston Peters Want His Legacy To Be?

A lot of people in New Zealand seem to resent Winston Peters and the power that he appears to have. “Appears” being the operative word. In reality, Peters will have power only up to the point that he uses it.

By next week, he’ll have become just another junior player in an MMP governing arrangement, battling to hold onto the gains he was promised. More>>

 

Rising Toll: Road Safety Needs To Be A Higher Priority

Official advice released to the Green Party under the Official Information Act shows that the previous National Government dismissed an option to make road safety its most important transport priority after being told the road toll was rising. More>>

ALSO:

Wellington.Scoop: Arrests At Blockade Of "Weapons Expo"

“We encourage people in Wellington to get down to the Westpac Stadium now for a day of awesome peace action. There will be plenty of food, music and activities to keep us sustained through the day.” More>>

ALSO:

Rorschach Restructuring: PSA Taking Inland Revenue To Court Over Psychometrics

The Public Service Association will be seeing Inland Revenue in Employment Court over its intention to psychometrically test employees reapplying for their roles at the department as part of its controversial Business Transformation restructuring plan. More>>

ALSO:

Nuclear Disarmament: Nobel Peace Prize 2017 Awarded To ICAN

Congratulations from iCAN Aotearoa New Zealand to international iCAN, the other iCAN national campaigns and partner organisations, and the countless organisations and individuals who have worked so hard for a nuclear weapons-free world since 1945. More>>

ALSO:

Expenses: Waikato DHB CEO Resigns

An independent inquiry has identified that Dr Murray had spent more than the agreed $25K allocated for relocation costs, and other unauthorized expenses involving potential financial breaches of the chief executive’s obligations. More>>

ALSO:

Wellington.Scoop: Sad About The Trolley Buses?

The Regional Council’s MetLink is today spending money to tell us that it really loves Wellington’s trolley buses, even though they’re all being taken off our roads by the end of this month. More>>

ALSO:

Post-Election: Preliminary Coalition Talks Begin

New Zealand First will hold post-election preliminary discussions in Wellington with the National Party tomorrow morning and the Labour Party tomorrow afternoon. More>>

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election