Verbal attacks on Fonterra ‘atrocious’ - National MP Nathan Guy

Rural Exchange 28/07/2018

A National MP has resurrected the now-infamous verbal attack on Fonterra made by two New Zealand First politicians.  

National’s agriculture spokesperson Nathan Guy told RadioLIVE that the comments made by Shane Jones and Winston Peters are one of his issues against the coalition Government.  

“… You have New Zealand First ministers out there ganging up big time on Fonterra,” Mr Guy said.

New Zealand First MP Shane Jones launched a blistering attack on Fonterra in June, calling for the company's long-standing chairman John Wilson to step down.

The Regional Development Minister also said that Mr Wilson should "catch the next cab out of town".

While Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern wouldn’t comment on the nature of Mr Jone’s comments, it didn’t stop deputy Mr Peters to back his fellow minister.

Mr Peters said that “heads should roll” at Fonterra following their massive losses.

But Mr Guy, who’s been critical of the Government’s approach to agriculture policy, found the attack on Fonterra “personal” and “atrocious”.

“They’re not shareholders in Fonterra and they’re out there just booting the outgoing chair personally.

“I think it’s atrocious the way that they’ve personally attacked them,” Mr Guy said.

Fonterra booked a more than $300m half-year loss for 2018 after writing down its Beingmate investment by $405m, causing worry amongst shareholders.

Fonterra confirmed on Friday that chairman John Wilson will be stepping down from his leadership role due to health issues.

He will be replaced by existing director John Monaghan.

Watch the full interview with Nathan Guy above.

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