• John Luxton
Food, Fibre, Biosecurity and Border Control

Food and Fibre Minister John Luxton said today that the Green's Agricultural policy released today reflected their extreme views and showed how out of touch they were with the agricultural sector.

"If their policies were adopted many farmers would be driven from the land and those remaining would face an escalation of on farm costs. National's policies
over the last nine years have been directed at reducing farmers' costs to improve their profitability", Mr Luxton said.

"National's existing policies are already committed to sustainable agriculture, ensuring the maintenance of biosecurity and increasing the diversification of
New Zealand farming. The Greens are not saying anything new in advocating these policies.

"National has welcomed new farming systems such as organic farming which can enhance returns for some products. These are, and should be, market driven not
imposed by Government.

"National is committed to the humane treatment of animals. The new Animal Welfare Act ensures animals, including farm animals, are treated humanely and
that new farming practices are encouraged.

"A vote for the Greens would see a return to the over-regulated economy that National has strived so hard to reduce. It would be the death knell of New Zealand farming," Mr Luxton concluded.