No Minister


Someone very close to me spends an inordinate amount of time every springtime and with her location the new season is already underway, saving lambs otherwise destined for an extremely truncated life expectancy due to a multitude of threats to their health and safety. Abandoned twins, mothers unable to make milk, adverse weather, both rain and high winds, and sometimes just very bad luck in parent selection can have this kind animal welfare adherent in action. A modest operation involving around fifty lambs often close to death being “saved’, annually.

Now there has been an extended concept of “traceability” introduced for New Zealand food production over recent times and when it comes into focus I am so very happy to be merely an observer while watching my friends and family still involved in active food production with the utter frustration that assaults daily. M.Bovis the infectious bovine disease that still looms as a serious problem for both dairy , beef plus the crossover industry, dairy beef all remain under threat due to a failure at “the Border” that saw a careless importation of product that carried the disease that has cost millions (a recent estimate of a quarter of a billion and counting), remains still unresolved.

Back to my close person and her encounter with the “Clipboard”. All farms are under ongoing audit as to their practice and recording and some pretty ordinary operations are being “certified as “compliant? Having completed the audits of commercial. operations the hobby farms and lifestylers are being scooped into the net of the now army of CB toting nonentities with their fleet of carbon consuming ICE vehicles and a salary almost all of their target populace can only dream about.

So my person receives a text or call there is a lamb for her to exercise her quite successful moves on and away in the RAV with a warm box to begin another resuscitation. As an operation the gross profits are awesome but when costs are deducted not so great. The saved lambs almost all picked up in their first day of life, end up heading to the export market that follows on from the idyllic time on green pastures via a Meat works where that aforementioned traceability becomes a weaponised operation of subjugation. To be accepted for slaughter all animals must have an accompanying paper trail that should testing reveal a substance or disease aboard an animal carcase the system can ostensibly back track to find where the contamination had occurred. Sounds great eh but that theoretically involves every animal getting stunned and then having its throat slit by a certified Muslim saying a little incantation for each one before sampling by a minion from The clipboard Battalion that has a potential to begin the test of traceability, for disease, chemical contamination, or some other trace of something an overzealous official at another border might discover that could threaten an entire ship load of product.

So we will call my friend ‘Ruth’, she, under the protocols in force must get a signed declaration stating the seriously threatened little lamb has had no substance administered along with its ‘state of origin’, while the parties are dealing with hundreds if not thousands of other animals on a daily basis often in challenging stress filled times. Now I have been observing Ruth for years now and all those saved lambs get a name and have every intervention recorded and should one become the target of a which hunt she would be one of very few who could deliver on demand a history that almost every other person involved on the ovine meat trade would struggle to match let alone get even close to. As an example there is a very large primary production not so far distant that exports corn, peas, squash, potatoes and has an associated integrated beef and lamb production system that sends hundreds of thousands of lambs to slaughter every year almost all that are bought in in unit loads from all over the country. In a typical week several unit loads arrive and are mixed up and redrafted into mobs according to weight and condition and fed, drenched treated for external parasites with approved substances and then head off for their final short journey to a processing facility for their contribution to feeding the world. The faster a lamb reaches the target weight the shorter the stay, and a final unit load say six hundred head will have come from any of hundreds of farm origins. so what chance an animal causing offence will be able to be accurately traced, diddly squat in truth.

Another extreme example of the flawed system occurred during last season when Ruth selected a “Draft” of her flock to go to a local facility, carefully selecting by live weight to obtain a carcase weight of 19Kgs and of that bunch of twelve, eleven came in at a close range of eighteen Kgs to a heaviest at twenty point five Kgs. Number twelve was an outlier at a carcase weight of sixteen Kgs that would equate to a live weight too many Kgs below the target. Statistically impossible so the likely scenario would have one of Ruth’s animals swapping with another lamb. from another mob sometime between selection and slaughter and the Traceability takes a hit just as so many of the “certainties” emanating from the podium of truth is proved slightly flawed.

Now one of he only things a Green Melon has promoted tat represented true progress, was a campaign by Sue Kedgley to have country of origin included in all food packaging, a great idea and easily including such detail of country of origin plus any further addition or downstream processing. The policy represented by a clipboard warrior putting Ruth through serious stress, she recently left the legal profession after an adverse health incident so it was stress she neither needed or deserved, results in instead of a lamb beginning it’s official life at Ruth’s hands, its totally irrelevant birth place must also be recorded.

All, from an administration that cannot even ascertain who of the border persons have been injected with an experimental substance but who demand compliance from an angel administering her current passion for all lambs lives matter until they are edible to far and away exceed standards of traceability that even many stud farms could struggle to match. Is it any wonder that M.Bovis came ashore when MPI are more swiss cheese than a security agency.

Written by Gravedodger

June 29, 2021 at 12:15 pm

Posted in New Zealand

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