MPI

Will MPI cameras on the fleet prove the system isn’t commercially viable? – Ctd

A few days ago, Whaleoil highlighted the problem:  that current fisheries practices, once observed by MPI camera, could spell the end of parts of the industry under the current regulation.

The CEO of Moana Fisheries responded to that article.

I read this article with interest and agree that government and fishers need to engage constructively to find practical solutions that will provide the public with confidence of a sustainable fishery and fishers with a workable framework within which to operate.

Moana New Zealand is the largest Iwi-owned fishing company in the country, and as such we have an even greater investment in the sustainability of the industry as kaitiaki, or guardians, of the sea for future generations.

The overwhelming view –based on international research and best practice –is that New Zealand’s Quota Management System (QMS) is one of the best sustainability tools in the world, and that is absolutely true. Read more »

Even gang members can’t escape the Fisheries Act

They may import chemicals, make meth, sell it, have illegal firearms and perform assaults without too much bother from the police, but don’t fluff around with taking illegal kai moana… not even as a gang member, because Fisheries officers are not going to take it easy.

The Ministry for Primary Industries’ Stephen Rudsdale says a fisheries officer immediately went to check the beach in Whangerei Heads after the first member of the public phoned authorities.

The officer “found one of the divers emerging from the water carrying a catch-bag of 19 scallops” Mr Rudsdale said.

“During the inspection, one of our officer’s was allegedly threatened by one of the divers,” he said.

“When they subsequently searched the area, they found 52 scallops dumped on the water’s edge and a catch-bag containing another 176 scallops in the water.”

Later in the evening, the MPI got a another call from a different person reporting two men acting suspiciously in the same area. Read more »

King Salmon can’t even get the most benign environmentalists on their side

via Stuff

King Salmon has been offered a sweetheart deal to move their salmon farms to pristine parts of the Marlborough Sounds.  A toothless RMA process, and no public input.

The Ministry for Primary Industries has initiated a process to give King Salmon an “easy ride” for approvals for new salmon farms in the protected Outer Marlborough Sounds, says the Environmental Defence Society.

“MPI is essentially acting as a co-applicant for approvals that will override the Marlborough Council’s plans that prohibit aquaculture development in the Outer Sounds and that protect scenic and landscape values,” says EDS CEO Gary Taylor.

The Environmental Defence Society is essentially a fox in charge of the hen house.  They are the business end of environmentalism that can generally be relied on not to be at all militant.   But this King Salmon deal has even the EDS up in arms.   Read more »

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National want Northland back

Previous drought in 2013

The drought in Northland has just been declared a medium-scale adverse event, which triggers additional support for struggling farmers.

“This is recognition of the extreme dry conditions farmers and growers are facing,” Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy said on Friday. Read more »

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Eketahuna cheesemaker strangled by bureaucratic red tape

Cwmglyn Cheese company owner Biddy Fraser-Davies has been in a battle with the Food Safety Authority since an appearance on Country Calendar in 2009.

In October last year, David Seymour wrote an article about Biddy Fraser-Davies, an Eketahuna cheesemaker who has been nearly shut out of business by costly regulations designed for large manufacturers of cheese like Fonterra. Below is an update from Biddy that was e-mailed to MPs. Her story is a sad example of injustice and bureaucratic red tape strangling a perfectly good business. National should have fixed this issue a long time ago. There appears to be no common sense applied in this situation but instead, a one size fits all rule that is not fit for purpose.

New Year Greetings to you all,

I write in some distress as it appears MPI is determined to close me down with their excessive demands for repeat testing of raw milk, immature cheese curd and final product testing of Cwmglyn mature raw hard cheese. My validation protocol has been complied with and ALL cheese was acceptable and way, way BELOW their tolerance limits and released for public sale. As the cost of testing for this validation study was in excess of $15,000.00, (for 10 cheese truckles) I had thought that on-going routine testing would be at a level that would be sensible (in terms of the food safety risk), cost effective and affordable for me. But no, apparently the dairy team at the Ministry of Primary Industries want to test me into extinction.

Read more »

Guest post – I am a fisherman, I am conservationist and I’m not a criminal

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Photo/ Supplied

I am proud to be a commercial fisherman.  The fish I have caught has contributed to the NZ economy and kept thousands of Kiwis whether ashore or at sea in employment, a roof over their heads, food on their tables and money to achieve their dreams.

And I’ve had a guts full of being slandered, called a criminal and my integrity questioned by NGOs, environmental groups and other such organisations with political axes to grind and the ever growing need for funding from Mrs Smith donating $5 a week from her housekeeping she can ill afford.

I know my peers throughout the industry feel the same way.  It used to upset me when my children came home from school refusing to eat their fish and chips because teacher said I kill Maui dolphins.  They’re old enough now to see both sides and form their own opinions.

I have never, ever deliberately discarded or dumped fish.  I have lost bags of fish over those 40 odd years through gear failure and because Old Huey, Manawydan Mac Lir, doth smote me mightily but those instances I can count on the fingers of my hands…with a few digits left over.  These accidental losses were recorded.

The deep water trawlers I am currently involved with are the largest on the NZ coast, which depending on the species, have a capacity of around 80-100 tonnes of DRE (dressed) or HGU (headed/gutted) frozen product over a 24 hour period.  If I’m fishing for southern blue whiting for example, 100 tonnes of frozen product equates to 165 tonne of whole fish before processing.

Since the introduction of the QMS, Glenn Simmons claims I have dumped or discarded 2.1 times or 210% more than I actually recorded as having caught.  He would have you believe I am actually catching 511.5 tonnes and discarding 346.5 tonnes back into the sea every 24hrs, day in and day out.

Doesn’t the absurdity of those figures ring alarm bells?  If not they should because I simply cannot catch that much fish; my ship, her fishing gear nor the fish stocks allows me to.  It’s just not possible.   Read more »

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So green eco-terrorists lie. What’s new? Problem is that they waste time and money

Some green eco-terrorists have made claims about the death of a Maui dolphin. It turns out they have zero evidence of their claims and a wild goose chase has ensued to find out what, if anything, has happened.

A cover-up is being alleged over the death of a critically endangered Maui’s dolphin outside a protected are off Taranaki, but the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) says the claim is unsubstantiated.

German conservation group NABU International spent three years trying to verify claims it had heard one of the dolphins was caught in a gillnet during the 2012/2013 fishing year.

It claims to have a statement from an eyewitness on the boat who said an official government observer told them he had “seen nothing”.

There are no recorded deaths of Maui’s dolphin in the official database of fishing bycatch for the 2012/2013 year. There are estimated to be around 50 of the mammals left.

NABU head of endangered species conservation Dr Barbara Maas says the group had tried for years to get MPI to confirm the rumour.

“To no avail, and given there are so few animals, we felt compelled to make this information available to the public in the hope it would spark some much-needed change.”

Read more »

Comment of the Day

Mauis-Dolphin

Whaleoil stalwart cows4me wrote

For three years now the ministry of primary industry has employed 34 observers to search for the Maui’s dolphin.

These observers have spent hundreds of days off the Taranaki coast looking for these elusive animals.

All this after set netting restrictions have crippled local fisherman’s livelihoods in the belief set netting was killing Maui dolphins.

Now for the good bits. Read more »

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Skeletal cows on ferry just fine, rules MPI

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I remember we had a bit of an argument among ourselves at the time, and I recall saying that if the state of these beasts was permissible, then it casts a nasty shadow over the industry.

An investigation into a photograph of thin cattle being transported on a Cook Strait ferry has revealed no evidence of physical harm.

The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) has completed an investigation into an animal welfare complaint regarding jersey cows being transported across Cook Strait in March this year.

The cull dairy cows were being transported from a farm in the upper South Island to a meat processing plant in Wellington.  Read more »

Wine growing bludgers whine as tax payer will no longer pay their MPI compliance cost

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Turns out the MPI has been under-charging wine growers for their compliance services, effectively propping up our wine industry with tax payers dollars.  It’s about to end.  Queue the whining.

New Zealand winegrowers say changes to the way the Ministry for Primary Industries wants to recover the cost of its wine regulatory programmes will cost the industry $2.9 million a year and are “manifestly unjustifiable”.

The ministry is reviewing how it recovers the costs of its biosecurity and food safety systems across the country’s primary industries, after under-recovering for several years as the volumes of exports grew, according to its consultation paper on proposed revisions to the cost recovery regime.

While taxpayers in part fund it, under legislation the industry which benefits from the work must shoulder some of the cost. This is the first review of the cost recovery regime since 2008. Read more »