Government welcomes undertaking to improve intensive winter grazing practices

first_imgGovernment welcomes undertaking to improve intensive winter grazing practices The farming sector has agreed to make immediate improvements to intensive winter grazing practices for the coming season and the Government will help them achieve this.Intensive winter grazing (IWG) is a farming practice where stock are confined to outdoor feeding areas planted with fodder crops.“If done poorly, IWG has serious negative effects on animal welfare and the environment, particularly freshwater health and estuaries. Farming leaders accept that these practices need to improve and they want to be part of the solution,” Environment Minister David Parker said.In return for the farming sector’s commitment, the Government has deferred the introduction of IWG practice regulations for a year until May 2022, while these improvements are made. However, rules preventing the expansion of IWG will still apply.The Government will work with the farming sector to improve on-the-ground IWG practices for the benefit of freshwater quality and animal welfare.“The one year deferment will enable an IWG farm plan ‘module’ to be rapidly developed, tested and deployed ready for formal incorporation into wider certified freshwater farm plans in 2022,” David Parker said.David Parker and Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor have always seen the freshwater farm plan regime as the key to achieving improvements in IWG practices.The Ministers thanked Beef + Lamb, Dairy NZ and the entire Southland Advisory Group for working cooperatively with the Government on effective and practical solutions to manage the impacts of winter grazing on the environment and animal welfare.Damien O’Connor said the direction of travel is known to all involved.“This decision provides certainty of direction and timeframe. We can get on and put farm plans into place as quickly as possible across all farming operations,” Damien O’Connor said.“Immediate improvements in IWG practices this season are required, and I have set out my expectations to both councils and industry bodies,” David Parker said.“Increased monitoring and reporting by councils will also ensure measurable improvements in IWG by May 2022. This will include quarterly reports to me.”A draft IWG farm plan module has been developed by the Southland Advisory Group, which included Environment Southland, DairyNZ, Beef + Lamb, Fish and Game and Federated Farmers, with input from iwi and Local Government NZ.“The draft module will give councils and the farming sector a head start in meeting their commitments to us,” David Parker said.The Government is determined to stop further degradation of our waterways and estuaries and to improve water quality for all New Zealanders. That is part of our commitment to lay the foundations for a better future for the generations of New Zealanders to come. /Public Release. This material comes from the originating organization and may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length. View in full here. Why?Well, unlike many news organisations, we have no sponsors, no corporate or ideological interests. We don’t put up a paywall – we believe in free access to information of public interest. Media ownership in Australia is one of the most concentrated in the world (Learn more). Since the trend of consolidation is and has historically been upward, fewer and fewer individuals or organizations control increasing shares of the mass media in our country. According to independent assessment, about 98% of the media sector is held by three conglomerates. This tendency is not only totally unacceptable, but also to a degree frightening). Learn more hereWe endeavour to provide the community with real-time access to true unfiltered news firsthand from primary sources. It is a bumpy road with all sorties of difficulties. We can only achieve this goal together. Our website is open to any citizen journalists and organizations who want to contribute, publish high-quality insights or send media releases to improve public access to impartial information. You and we have the right to know, learn, read, hear what and how we deem appropriate.Your support is greatly appreciated. All donations are kept completely private and confidential.Thank you in advance!Tags:Agriculture, animal, animal welfare, environment, Farming, future, Government, industry, Local Government, Minister, New Zealand, NZ, quality, season, travel, water qualitylast_img read more