Medium scale adverse event declared in NorthlandPrimary Industries
Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy has declared a medium-scale adverse event for the primary sector in storm-hit Northland.
“This will provide the overarching framework for any Government support as assessments continue to be made.
“The first stage of this is to provide funding for Northland Rural Support Trust (NRST) to deliver help, support, and management advice to farmers and growers. The Trust have been working closely with MPI and local authorities to determine what's required in the clean-up phase after severe flooding and wind damage.
“The storm has impacted around 80% of the primary sector in Northland with very high winds and heavy rainfall over a solid four day period. I’ve seen for myself the damage today at an avocado orchard severely damaged by wind and dairy farms near Whangarei under water.
“With spring calving beginning and avocado crops close to harvest this storm couldn't have come at a worse time. It has been a tough blow for many farmers in western parts of Northland who suffered through a prolonged drought earlier this year.”
However the majority of farmers and growers are coping reasonably well. NRST is working to source feed options for dairy cows as much of the pasture that is still underwater will die and require re-sowing.
“The local community has done a great job of pulling together and helping each other out. Farmers and growers are resilient and will get through this,” says Mr Guy.
Mr Guy expects to receive regular updates from MPI and other Departments on any further requests for Government assistance, which could include helping with the clean-up, tax flexibility arrangements or financial hardship assistance.
Yesterday the Minister of Civil Defence announced a $100,000 contribution to mayoral relief funds being established to provide assistance for community members who are experiencing financial difficulties as a result of the severe weather event.