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Federated Farmers confirms contamination threat

Federated Farmers confirms contamination threat

Federated Farmers receives threat to contaminate dairy infant formula product

Federated Farmers has confirmed it has received a threat to sabotage New Zealand infant formula with the pesticide 1080.

The anonymous letter was received at Federated Farmers Wellington offices in late November. It was addressed to the Chief Executive Graham Smith.

The letter was accompanied by an enclosed plastic bag containing a powder.

Federated Farmers gave the letter and bag to the Police.

Federated Farmers has collaborated closely with MPI and other government agencies to assist in their responses to this threat.

Federated Farmers President Dr William Rolleston says the letter is of extremely serious concern.

“But I am confident from what I’ve seen that our regulatory authorities and processors have created formidable barriers to any such threat being carried out.

I’ve recently been invited through Fonterra’s Canpac plant in Hamilton where they do secondary milkpowder packaging as well as the Te Rapa factory which manufactures 20 percent of Fonterra’s national milkpowder production. It’s evident that the security surrounding dairy processing in New Zealand is second to none and the tamper proofing of the product is also first class,” he says.

Dr Rolleston also says he’s been assured that the full resources of the government will be going into assuring customers of the integrity of local product and exports from New Zealand.

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“MPI have implemented a comprehensive 1080 testing regime in dairy processing plants which should allay consumer concerns.”

Dr Rolleston says the use of 1080 is both a vital and safe means of controlling the spread of bovine tuberculosis between New Zealand dairy herds.

“The significant reduction in bovine Tb incidence over recent years shows 1080 is very effective, while its use has had minimal impact on non-target species. ”

Dr Rolleston says farmers can help in countering the sabotage threat.

“We fully support the Police investigation and I urge any members of Federated Farmers to immediately notify Police if they have any information which may assist the Police in their enquiries.”


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