Come and join the Groundswell

Having answered the call to increase production numerous times by numerous governments for the good of everybody so we can live in a first world country, we are now looking at the impending criminalisation of farmers with the government’s top-down  ‘we know everything’ approach.
This approach relates to regulation, policing and enforcement with unnecessary costs, delays, complexity and red tape and the completely barmy one size fits all approach.

GROUNDSWELL grew out of the Gore tractor protest led by Bryce McKenzie in response to the totally ridiculous winter grazing rules of crops having to be sown by November 1 (regardless of weather), pugging rules and no sowing of slopes over 10 degrees - the National Policy Statement on Freshwater. Two tractors set off and that swelled to 120 by the time we got to town.

GROUNDSWELL now comprises dairy farmers, sheep and beef, arable, dairy grazing and significantly, people involved in farm support, all of whom are FOR improving freshwater and are dedicated environmentalists. There is not a redneck among them, just practical rural people. 

Meanwhile, the Pomahaka Catchment Group have proven that they could turn that river around from being the most degraded river in Otago seven years ago to today, where all readings are in the green and significantly the trend is down, achieved without punitive regulations, consents and cost.

Since the tractor protest we have had a landslide of new regulations:- The National Policy Statement on Biodiversity; The Crown Pastoral Land Reform Bill; new rules around Irrigation Schemes; the threat of Significant Natural Areas.

All these are being thrust on farmers with no compensation but ongoing rates costs.

There’s also the rules the IRD are bringing in for property sales, the Climate Change Commission unfairly targeting farming methane emissions and the new Drinking Water Standards legislation, nationalising NZ’s water and adding yet more cost to farmers.

Groundswell is holding public meetings and you’re invited to attend.
  • Ashburton Event Center on the 12th of April at 7.30pm.
  • Omihi Community Hall in Amberley 13th April at 7.30pm.
  • Shantytown Greymouth on the 14th April at 10am.
  • Fox Glacier Community Center 14th April at 6pm.

If you are close to any of these places you should make the effort to come along and hear the GROUNDSWELL Team and special guest speaker Jane Smith. Jane was the winner of the Ballance Farm Environment Awards, is a passionate full on farmer and pull no punches commentator on farming and politics in NZ. She’s joined by guest speaker Jamie McFadden of the Rural Advocacy Network who asks “are you being told the full story”? 

Come and find out about the ramifications of Farm Environment Plans and Significant Natural Areas. Jamie will also explain the National Policy Statement on Biodiversity.

We are well aware of farmers facing very difficult circumstances - you’re not alone!! This is about property rights. Should we sit back and allow the demise of the family farm to happen?

This is not a Wellbeing Workshop……It is the real deal and if you can be there, you should be there.  GROUNDSWELL wants to hear YOUR ideas and experiences.

Please help us spread the word by sharing with your friends, neighbours and bull clients.

We need everyone to contact at least 10 other people. These rules mean 4500 cows will have to exit South Westland for a start - that is less bulls required no matter what colour they are.

Laurie Paterson
Groundswell NZ spokesman, Southland sheep and beef farmer