A group of sheep breeders has passed a vote of no confidence
in AgResearch over its handling of plans to slash Invermay
Southern Texel Breeders chairman Hugh Gardyne said the motion
would be given to the Government and the ideal result would
be the AgResearch board and executive getting the sack.
He was looking for a ''quick response'' from the Government
through Clutha-Southland MP Bill English's office.
The motion of no confidence, which was deferred at a meeting
in Gore last month, was revived due to AgResearch's failure
to respond to concerns raised at that meeting, Mr Gardyne
Of the farmers at the meeting, 90% responded to the revived
motion, none voted against, and 10% abstained from the vote.
This showed the depth of feeling on the issue and was a
similar result to a survey carried out by former AgResearch
director Jock Allison, which found 92.1% of sheep breeders
were against shifting Invermay, Mr Gardyne said.
''Some of the respondents that I have talked to are angry
that they have been treated with contempt.''
Recent letters AgResearch sent to breeders were
''masquerading'' as consultation.
''In reality, it's 12 months too late,'' Mr Gardyne said.
He did not believe approving the motion would be
''counter-productive'' as was suggested by AgResearch
chairman Sam Robinson at the meeting in Gore last month.
Mr Gardyne declined to say how many farmers voted on the
motion, but AgResearch previously said that of the just under
100 people at the meeting last month, about 50 were farmers.
AgResearch responded with a statement which did not respond
to Otago Daily Times' questions about whether it was
concerned about the vote of no confidence or Mr Gardyne's
accusations it had ignored concerns raised at the meeting.
''We are happy to continue with this engagement and discuss
any concerns they or other stakeholders might have.
''We remain committed to find the best solution to continue
to deliver the science all New Zealand farmers rely on to
stay ahead of their international counterparts,'' an
AgResearch spokesman said.