The discriminatory nitrogen tax proposed by the Green Party in its launch today gets a not-unexpected thumbs-down from Federated Farmers says National Board Member and spokesperson Chris Allen.
This approach contradicts the assurance that James Shaw made to our National Conference in June this year with respect to water quality we are "all" (rural and urban) in this together.
We now realise that "all" just means "farmers".
"If this is the kind of "help" we can expect farmers to get from the Greens, then New Zealanders simply can’t afford to continue to rely on the primary sector for our economic viability.
"We can’t stay in business if potential governments are going to threaten our family businesses this way."
The Green Party claims that their proposal will make us more competitive in world markets. Nothing could be further from the truth - as what they propose is just another tax on our unsubsidized farming businesses who have to compete against highly subsidized competitors all over the world.
Feds has a message for all Kiwi voters.
"Kiwis are being fed a steady diet of half-truths and mis-information about the condition of our waterways, by all kinds of groups who just want your vote.
"Most of the stuff you are reading from these parties is based on old information and a total lack of understanding of the primary sector," Chris says.
We note the Greens are only interested in cleaning up rivers and lakes - what about harbors and beaches that are arguably in a worse state?
"Or is that issue too hard to raise in an election campaign? Nobody wants to tell urban voters how bad their waterways are.
"The Greens’ approach is out of touch with, and an insult to, the collaborative work been undertaken by farmers, particularly over the last decade, and indicates that this party simply doesn’t get it.
"Nitrogen is organic and an essential to life"