22 Mar 2010

Pork industry no longer sees need for regulations

8:59 pm on 22 March 2010

The pork industry says costly regulations imposed on pig farmers are not relevant and should be removed.

New Zealand Pork and the Sustainable Farming Fund have released the findings of their own year-long study into the environmental practices of nine pig farms.

The chief executive of New Zealand Pork, Sam McIvor, says they show that the pork industry has cleaned up its act and that the current regulations, which are financially hurting producers, are no longer needed.

The report, done by Massey University researchers and partly funded by the Ministry of Agriculture's Sustainable Farming Fund, assessed nine pig farms of various sizes from six regions.

It focuses on farmers' ability to manage piggery manure and the sorts of technology used to mitigate the effects of that on the environment.

Mr McIvor says the report's purpose is to demonstrate to regional councils the industry's impressive environmental performance, in the hopes that the authorities may do away with some of their regulations.

The Green Party's agricultural spokesperson, Kevin Hague, says that while regulation may be considered onerous by some farmers, robust protection for freshwater supplies should be continued.