A New Zealand farm has been forced to apologise for allegedly stealing the land of another farmer to make way for a new dairy farm.
Key points:The alleged land grab was the subject of a Facebook post from a farmer on the South IslandFarmers FederationThe Federation said it had lodged a complaint with the Southland Government about the alleged theftThe farm said it was ‘disappointed’ by the alleged landgrabIt was reported in the South West Herald on Tuesday that a farm had stolen the land and was trying to reclaim it.
It’s alleged that the farm had taken an area of land that was formerly used by a dairy farm, and had started to clear it for a dairy operation.
The Southland Farmers Federation said in a Facebook comment that it had filed a complaint about the incident to the South Land and Water Authority.
The organisation said it has lodged a formal complaint with police.
The SA Government said it would be examining the matter.
“We will be working with the SA Government to ensure the farmers involved are held to account,” the SA Land and Environment Minister David Shatter said.
The Federation of New Zealand Farmers (FNZF) said it lodged a report with the police about the land grab, which it said was a “huge problem”.
“It’s been reported to the SA Police Force and they’re now investigating it,” the Federation said.
It said it hoped the Southlander Government would take action to hold those involved to account.
“It would be good to see this matter go away, so we can move on to the next round of farmers having a farm and producing food,” the federation said.
A Southland farmer said he was “disgusted” by the land grabbing.
“This is a huge problem, especially in a place like Southland, where you get farmers like this and this is happening all the time,” he said.
“There is a lot of farming in Southland.”
The farmer, who does not wish to be named, said he hoped the matter was resolved quickly.
“My neighbour and I are going to look into it.”