Farmers angry at Beef and Lamb over proposed emissions taxes

Post on NZ Farming facebook page

Beef + Lamb NZ (B+LNZ) directors and senior staff have been told to shape up or ship out, as farmer anger boils over about proposed farm emissions taxes.
This follows a fiery meeting, held in Gore on Oct 28, where farmers questioned both the savviness and efforts of both B+LNZ’s directors and its executives in standing up to the Government on behalf of the red meat sector.

Southland farmer Hugh Gardyne has written to B+LNZ chief executive Sam McIvor, on behalf of farmers who attended the meeting, to express their anger and frustration about how the industry good body has represented the sheep and beef sector in developing a proposed farm emissions policy via the He Waka Eke Noa (HWEN) process.

The letter warns McIvor that unless B+LNZ stops “acting like puppets of the Government” and makes “a huge reset” following the Government’s recent announcement on HWEN, farmers will force a vote of no confidence in the industry body and its current board.

“Your results to date show a lack of understanding of your mandate, a lack of strategy, an ignorance of rank and file farmers’ opinions and a complete lack of ‘street smarts’ to achieve results satisfactory to levy payers,” the letter tells McIvor.

Gardyne goes on to say that B+LNZ chair Andrew Morrison and his board must start “listening to farmers or stand down”. The letter adds that unless this happens, a “vote of no confidence, which was one of the motions passed at the Gore meeting, will be put.”

Gardyne explains that farmer anger at B+LNZ has only grown following the Government’s announcement, last month, of its position on HWEN and its rejection of key parts of that proposal.

“Paying for emissions, as proposed by the Government, will not only compromise the 20% of beef and lamb levy payers who will be forced out of farming, but the other 80% as well,” the letter says.

“It will bring NZ down economically and socially. What is the point? Regardless of the past work and representations of B+LNZ, it is time for a reset. The Government has rejected key points in the HWEN report, so a new strategy is urgently requried.

“People say: ‘stay united’. We are – it is Beef and Lamb that is out of step!”

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