The MPI process to revise and update Animal Codes of Welfare is ramping up with the recent release and call for submissions on the proposed Code of Welfare for Dairy Cattle. The proposed code for pigs was also released recently and the sheep and beef one is due shortly.
All three codes have the potential to have major impacts on the way we farm and are likely add considerably to costs if adopted in their present form.
Federated Farmers is urging members to get involved in the submission process to ensure that the rational voice of producers is heard loud and clear in a debate where other voices, often with personal agendas, are often loudest.
There are a couple of ways to have your say. If you’re a Feds member, we will be submitting on your behalf. Phil Holland firstname.lastname@example.org, our Senior Policy Advisor, is leading the team on this submission, and he is open to hearing what your thoughts are.
You could also send in your individual submission; this is an opportunity to share your story, to let the decision makers know how this code will affect you in its current form and how it could be more effectively be designed and implemented. Your feedback or submission does not have to cover all the proposals, feel free to concentrate on the parts that will affect you the most.
Proposals included in the draft Dairy Code of Welfare are:
- a ban on electric backing gates and electro immobilisation
- changes to body condition score thresholds for intervention on welfare grounds
- provision of shelter during adverse weather
- no dogs on the milking platform
- provision of lying surfaces and limits for time on hard surfaces in off-paddock facilities
- compulsory twice a day calf feeding (and standards about the quantity of colostrum a calf
- end-of-life management (including controls on transport of lactating cows)
- requirement for farms to have a fully documented quality assurance plan that ensures compliance with the minimum standards required by the Code of Welfare and is audited and least once a year.
Submissions to MPI close 5pm on Thursday 30 June 2022 and all of the documents are on the MPI website at: https://www.mpi.govt.nz/consultations/changes-to-the-code-of-welfare-for-dairy-cattle/