“The Government’s latest move to allow butchers to process pork for supermarkets, but not sell it themselves, is illogical,” according to ACT Leader David Seymour.
“It appears that animal welfare concerns have pushed the Government to move on the restrictions against butchers. That is positive insofar as it goes, but delivers the worst of all worlds.
“One objection to allowing butchers to open was that distribution might spread COVID-19. Now, pig carcasses will presumably be delivered to butchers, who will butcher them, then transported again to supermarkets who will sell them.
“A far more logical approach would have been to allow butchers to sell the meat, reducing the amount of travel in distribution and by customers. It makes no sense for customers to travel further to a bigger and busier store to buy pork that was recently at the premises of their local butcher.
“One suspects that the Government is worried that if it allows butchers to open it may have to allow fruit and vegetable stores to open, too. This would again be illogical thinking. Small stores selling essential supplies can either do so safely or they can’t. The Government knows they can because it has approved dairies to open.
“By allowing butchers to process pork in response to welfare concerns for pigs, the Government has shown it can be flexible. It should now be logical and allow butchers to open fully.”