The following was emailed to farmers on 7 March 2023.
Beef + Lamb New Zealand (B+LNZ) in conjunction with 50 Shades of Green, is launched the Kiwis Backing Farmers campaign on 7 March.
The Kiwis Backing Farmers campaign will raise awareness of the overwhelming wave of environmental policies and proposals from the Government that are undermining the future of our sector.
The scale and pace of change means we’ve ended up with a lot of poorly crafted and conflicting rules that are particularly bad for sheep and beef farmers and rural communities.
Prime Minister Chris Hipkins recently acknowledged that the Labour Government has gone too far, too fast and said he will make changes. We want agriculture included in that list.
We’re calling on the Government to:
- press pause on any new regulations like Biodiversity and Resource Management Act reform
- urgently carry out an assessment of the cumulative impact of all these policies – it must take an integrated approach
- urgently address the sale of sheep and beef farms into carbon farming (by putting limits in the ETS on the amount of offsetting fossil fuel emitters can do) and commit to doing this before any price on agricultural emissions is introduced
- take a cautious approach to any price on agricultural emissions and ensure that farmers get proper recognition for the sequestration happening on their farms from trees
- review the methane targets in line with a warming approach
- fix remaining essential freshwater issues, like the low slope map for stock exclusion.
We know there is widespread public support for farmers, particularly in regional New Zealand, and we want to harness this.
The campaign was initially scheduled to build on the release of our sector’s pre-election manifesto but was delayed by Cyclone Gabrielle.
The Kiwis Backing Farmers campaign is underpinned by a microsite at www.kiwisbackingfarmers.nz that encourages New Zealanders to easily show their support.
The microsite features:
- an outline of environmental policies that farmers need to be fixed, covering afforestation, climate change, biodiversity and freshwater
- an email template that can be sent to Government Ministers asking for changes to policy settings, as well as to opposition party leaders asking them to ensure these issues are covered in their policy platforms in the lead-up to the election
- information about the sector’s environmental record.
Farmers can help by:
- visiting the Kiwis Backing Farmers website at www.kiwisbackingfarmers.nz and sending an email to Ministers, and encouraging their friends, family and networks to do the same
- sharing the campaign’s social media posts and encouraging friends, family and rural businesses to do the same – check out on Facebook and Instagram.
Farmers, their families and rural communities are at the heart of the Kiwis Backing Farmers campaign and B+LNZ wants to secure changes to the unworkable and unfair policies.