7 Mar 2013

Manawatu seeking drought declaration

6:36 am on 7 March 2013

Manawatu will be seeking to join the growing number of North Island regions officially in drought.

The Government declared Northland a drought zone last week.

On Wednesday Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy extended the declaration to include Waikato and Hawke's Bay, South Auckland and Bay of Plenty.

A meeting called by Federated Farmers on Wednesday decided to seek the same recognition for the Manawatu Rangitikei region.

Federated Farmers provincial president Andrew Hoggard said some parts of the Rangitikei hill country and northern Manawatu are in a worse state now than they were in 2008, when the region was last in drought.