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Dairy's promises don't stack up

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OPINION: We have often heard from many individual dairy farmers, and those groups representing them, just how hard they are working to comply with new regulations designed to prevent and reverse the pollution of waterways and aquifers from nutrient runoff.

We have been repeatedly told that those flouting the new rules are a dwindling minority while a growing majority of dairy operations are now carried out to very high environmental standards.

We believed these assurances because we wanted to as the alternative was too challenging and unpleasant to address. There was also a growing empathy for the image of hard working dairy farmers who were faced with the significant financial cost of solving a problem there were not alone in creating. Some complained that the "dirty dairying" label had been unfairly applied to all of them when it was only that dwindling minority at fault.

There are without doubt many responsible dairy farmers who fit that description but there are still far too many who are as ignorant of their duty to the environment as their cow-cocky grandfathers were. Those either not meeting the rules or in danger of it are in the majority in the Waikato.

* Non-compliance continues to plague Waikato dairy industry

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