Saturday, May 25, 2024

Meat and dairy leading the herd

New Zealand’s food and fibre exports for the year ending June 2022 hit $53.3 billion – $1.1 billion more than expected.

Agriculture Minister, Damien O’Connor said the outstanding result was testament to the ongoing efforts of farmers, growers, foresters, fishers and processors.

“The June quarter saw a strong finish to what we’d already forecast to be a record year for exports. Meat and dairy led the charge in bringing an additional $1.1 billion into our economy,” Mr O’Connor said.

The final export data also showed seafood and horticulture exports surpassing the previous year’s exports.

Minister O’Connor said the Government was committed to continuing its work with the food and fibre sector.

“We developed the Government and sector roadmap Fit for a Better World to lift productivity, sustainability and jobs because we all recognise our markets are evolving and the climate is changing,” he said.

“Through Budget 2022, we committed more than $1 billion to help the sector reduce agricultural emissions, boost productivity, and provide vital support to farmers and growers on the ground such as through the new On Farm Support team.”

The Government has also committed more than $216 million in projects through its Sustainable Food and Fibre Futures fund.

“Together we’re backing a large range of projects from understanding regenerative farming practices in the New Zealand context, to exploring and progressing new sectors, such as hemp and medicinal cannabis,” said Mr O’Connor.

Fit for a Better World is a true partnership that will pay dividends in the coming decade, and our record export revenue shows what can be achieved through Government and sector collaboration.”

He said the food and fibre sector continued to head New Zealand’s export-led economic recovery. 

“Food and fibre exports made up 81.4 percent of New Zealand’s total exports in the year to 30 June 2022.”

“In the two years since COVID-19 came knocking on our doors, I believe that, collectively, we’ve done a terrific job keeping the wheels of the economy turning. 

“The sector has also responded to other challenges, such as the current weather events which I’m watching closely.

“I’d like to acknowledge the sectors’ ongoing efforts and congratulate them on a job well done. It’s helping provide New Zealand’s economic security in challenging times,” Mr O’Connor said.

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