Growers Question New Zealand's Chemical Use

Published online: Jun 06, 2005
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Tasmania Primary Industries Minister Steve Kons supported angry potato growers who were querying New Zealand's use of chemicals on their crop and called for other states to follow suit.

He was reacting to Tasmania's loss of an A$10-million (US$ 7.6-million) contract to supply fries to McDonald's.

McDonalds's said it would look elsewhere for suppliers, including New Zealand.

Across the Tasman Sea, New Zealand growers chairman Terry Olsen said the industry would welcome a contract. But he criticized Kon's comments on New Zealand's pesticide and fungicide uses, saying it was strictly controlled just as it was in Australia.

A spokesman for Kons said he had since been advised by his officials that New Zealand's chemical use was governed by stringent regulations.