4 Jun 2011

Policy separation wanted at MAF

6:33 am on 4 June 2011

Beekeepers are calling for the Ministry of Agriculture & Forestry to separate its interest in free trade from its biosecurity division.

The industry says there is a severe conflict of interest that could pave the way for foreign bee diseases to come into the country.

Waiotapu beekeeper Russell Berry told a public forum in Tauranga that MAF is advocating free trade while it is supposed to be driving biosecurity.

Mr Berry, who has hives in the Bay of Plenty, said New Zealand does not have many of the diseases present in some other countries.