“Fonterra’s proposed new Effluent Improvement System (EIS) has good intentions, but the detail is flawed,” says Lachlan McKenzie, Federated Farmers Dairy chairperson.
“Federated Farmers feels it is important to remind people that a vast majority of dairy farmers play by the rules. Only a very small number have effluent management issues. The rest are doing an exceptional job despite the overbearing rules and changing expectations forced on them by regional councils.
“What distracts farmers from the good intent of this proposal is the idea of being fined twice - once by regional councils and then again by Fonterra.
“Instead of introducing a milk payout deduction system for those who receive an infringement notice or prosecution from a regional council, Federated Farmers suggests Fonterra put its resources and any penalty regimes in place to avoid regional council involvement.
“Federated Farmers firmly believe that these few bad farmers have to improve their effluent management systems. If they don’t show signs of sensible improvement then regional councils have the power to prosecute,” Mr McKenzie concluded.