Southland Federated Farmers vice president Bernadette Hunt says she finds it “interesting” that Environment Minister David Parker continues to downplay the feedback on the Government’s freshwater regulations.
The peak industry body for plant producers and their industry partners represents more than 100 plant producers and businesses in New Zealand.
The organisation produces plants for a diverse range of purposes, including food for local eating and exports, regenerating New Zealand’s forests, and urban and domestic planting.
The first point in NZPP’s election manifesto is guaranteeing priority access to water for plant producers.
“Primary industries rely on our production, and many families need our plants for food and wellbeing. Access to water is critical to Government plans for more horticulture, forests, and greener living spaces,” it says in the manifesto.
“We support DairyNZ, NZ Beef & Lamb and Horticulture New Zealand’s request for, and assessment of, New Zealand’s water infrastructure and investment in viable water capture and storage.”
NZPP wants an independent assessment of New Zealand’s water infrastructure to ensure it is able to fulfil future needs and to identify regions at risk of water shortages.
“A National Water Strategy, backed by credible investment, is needed to guarantee a reliable supply of water,” it says.
NZPP’s eight points are:
1. Plant producers must get priority access to water
2. New Zealand needs access to the World’s best plant varieties
3. The RSE scheme must be expanded with access to key workers from overseas
4. The Review of Vocational Education must be prioritised
5. Regulation and legislation must be reviewed and rationalised
6. Biosecurity must be strengthened and supported
7. Investment in planting must be targeted at our most efficient producers
8. New Zealanders deserve more green spaces in our urban areas