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To The Editor
I refer to Dr Marjorie Orr's article posted on your site recently; a number of statements are made that in my view are not correct. The first one being the headline "Why is home-kill meat so much better than meat from the works?"
Whether we like it or not, 1080 poison is widely used to kill introduced mammalian species that may threaten native wildlife and harbour TB. Occasionally large pest-killing operations take place in areas not readily accessible on foot. Licensed operators drop 1080-laced bait from planes and helicopters over huge areas of forest. The target animals are usually possums, rats and stoats.
As a country based on animal exports, it’s important that our animal welfare standards lead the world. We must be ahead of anyone who sees our standards as a way to block our trade. Before we start trying to change the world, we need to start off at home, and New Zealanders need to know what’s going on and especially why.
Rod Slater is correct in some of his responses to my article on home-kill vs meat works meat, however as he rightly points out, when I said home-kill was 'better' I was focussing on better welfare for the animals and a better financial deal for the farmer (who can make use of the whole carcase). I believe that these are issues that are important to most lifestyle farmers.