Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Aux farms, citoyens

Celebrating ‘intellect-intensive’ agriculture Simon Upton
writes in praise of a new approach to meat marketing
pioneered in this country by a company called Rissington
Breedline, whereby scrupulous attention is paid to every
detail of the supply chain from paddock to plate—and in
despair of the ‘image of producers conveyed by Federated
Farmers,’ which, Upton correctly says, went ‘feral’ under
the presidency of Charlie Pedersen and has stayed that
way since Don Nicholson succeeded him. Just when the
farmers' main representative body desperately needed
enlightened leadership it has been led, or rather, misled
by men whose response to the green movement has
essentially been one of self-righteous bluster. Their press
statements, Upton says, again correctly, 'reveal a chip-on-
shoulder, them-and-us antagonism towards life beyond
the farm gate.' In last Saturday's New Zealand Herald, in
a well-written feature by Geoff Cumming, Nicholson
sneeringly referred to 'greenies.' His organization has
also been dismissive of the Green Party's recent paper on
how to cut carbon emissions by 40% on 1990 levels by
2020, a paper in which the party makes a real effort to
reach out to farmers and understand and accommodate
their concerns about the cost of adapting to climate
change. What a missed opportunity to engage in
constructive debate. What we have here, I fear, is a
problem not with 'greenies' but with 'farmies.'


Laura McQuillan said...

Hello good sir,
I was wondering if you'd like to be a judge for the ASPAs this year but the email address I have for you has bounced back.
Email me and I'll forward you on some details about this year's awards.
Laura McQuillan

Gareth said...

See also my take here.

I like Upton's use of the word "feral"...