Changes to dairy industry legislation one step closer

Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor has welcomed the first reading of the Dairy Industry Restructuring Amendment Bill in Parliament today.

“The proposed changes the Government is making to this legislation will support our dairy sector to produce and export high value goods in a way that sustains the environment it relies upon”, he says.

“One of the 12 priority outcomes of the Coalition Government is to build a productive, sustainable and inclusive economy, and the dairy industry is a crucial player in that journey. It is our largest export sector, contributing nearly $8 billion to New Zealand’s total GDP.  

“The industry provides jobs and income for more than 40,000 workers – most of them on farms, but many in dairy processing too.

“But we are now at a point where change is necessary, to help get the dairy sector in better shape for the future.  

“The DIRA was passed into law in 2001 and saw the creation of Fonterra. It also promotes the efficient operation of dairy markets in New Zealand.

“The industry has changed considerably since 2001, and it is important to ensure the regulatory regime puts the sector in the best possible position.

The changes the Government is making will support our dairy sector to produce and export high value goods in a way that sustains the environment it relies upon. DIRA drives much of this work and after 17 years it’s the right thing to do to make it fit for the 21st century.

“The Bill will now move to Select Committee and I encourage people to have their say. I want to make sure we have a law that is going to work for everyone it affects”.

More information about the proposed changes to the DIRA is available on MPI website: www.mpi.govt.nz/dira-review