Saturday, 28 March 2020 09:22

COVID-19: Farmer lobby’s strength on display

Written by  Staff Reporters
Katie Milne. Katie Milne.

Federated Farmers president Katie Milne says COVID-19 has highlighted the strength of the farmer lobby.

“It shows the strength of Federated Farmers that we’re being looked to as the ‘go to’ source of advice and conduit of essential information to the agriculture sector during Covid-19,” she told Feds members in an email last night.

“We’ve found answers to pretty much every question our members have fired at us over the last week or two and it’s all summarised on our website and in the regular advisories we’ve emailed.”

Milne says it isn’t too far-fetched an analogy to say the nation is at war.

“This time the enemy is microscopic but still deadly.

“And just as farming and food supply was regarded as essential services during both World Wars, the government has again given us that status under the COVID-19 lockdown.”

Milne points out that as NZ faces huge economic disruption as a country we’re holding onto a small number of economic life rafts. Farming is one of them.

“The export income we continue to earn is crucial now, and as we recover at the other end of this crisis.

“The seasons and the requirements of our animals and crops pay no heed to coronavirus. “Sheep still have to be shorn for their welfare: fertiliser still has to be spread so there is grass and crops after winter.”

However, Milne had some strong words of caution for farmers.

No farmer should abuse this privileged position we have been granted, she adds.

“If it’s not essential work, don’t do it. No gallivanting off socially; we need to observe lockdown rules after work just like the rest of New Zealanders. Keep your 2-metres from fellow workers.” 

More like this

Bull sales continue in lockdowns

A hybrid auction platform launched during last year's Covid lockdown is allowing beef and dairy bull sales across the North Island to continue.

Benefits of shovel ready projects

OPINION: As I write, our nation has returned to lockdowns and it has given me time to reflect on all we have accomplished in the year since the Covid-19 pandemic hit this country hard.

Alliance Group's online sales surge

Online sales via Alliance Group’s online red meat delivery channel puresouthshop.com have grown significantly during the Covid-19 alert level restrictions.

Solid result for Arla despite Covid

European co-operative Arla Foods says it has delivered financial results and branded sales volumes at the top end of expectations, despite challenges posed by Covid-19.

National

Guy standing for Ravensdown

Former Agriculture Minister and Horowhenua dairy farmer Nathan Guy is standing for election to the Ravensdown board of directors.

Nats new first woman of Ag

The National Party's new agriculture spokesperson says she'll be working from the grassroots up, rather than the top down, as…

Machinery & Products

Helps tame the wind!

Amazone's recently released WindControl System automatically monitors and adjusts the spreading pattern to compensate for the effect of the wind…

First Claas patent hits a century

While Claas has registered more than 3,000 patents during its 108-year history, the company is currently celebrating the 100th anniversary…

JD invests in robotics

Global giant Deere and Co has acquired Silicon Valley start-up company Bear Flag Robotics, which specialises in autonomous driving technologies…

» The RNG Weather Report

» Latest Print Issues Online

The Hound

Too many hits?

OPINION: Well-known professional protestor, John Minto has run off at the mouth without checking his facts.

Good question!

A mate of the Hound's thinks it was more than a bit dodgy when DairyNZ chair Jim van der Poel…

» Connect with Rural News

» eNewsletter

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter