Saturday, August 10, 2013

Fonterra and other NZ food manufacturers---the message is clear---get your act together!

As China becomes increasingly strident in its demand for clean and safe food items, New Zealand's claim to be 100% pure is going to come under huge pressure and that is entirely understandable. There is also a move within China to bring about better standards within this huge country. The growing middle class along with a gradual increase in their power to influence the incumbent 'big business' Communist Party is only going to put New Zealand under the spotlight. Fonterra and other companies have a very narrow window of opportunity to 'get things right' and win  back the confidence of China. We are caught in the middle of very real fears and a possible political power play by the Communist Party to divert attention from issues within our huge trading partner. In a sense, NZ is only a bit player in world politics and China does not owe us anything and that is something NZ must recognise. If an alternate 'food source' was available to the Chinese market, we would be dropped in a flash. There is no 'loyalty factor, emanating from a 'where Britain goes, we follow,' ethos and even that does not work for us any longer re the UK, so NZ needs to toughen up and do whatever is necessary to retain and even grow our market in China, based solely on our 'relationship' and quality of product. I believe the Government knows this and baying by our Opposition needs to take into account he new reality. Maybe that will be the measure of David Shearer over the next few months.
Bottom line? New Zealand is not owed a living by the rest of the world, certainly not China.

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