8 Apr 2014

NZ agriculture 'facing more competition'

10:17 am on 8 April 2014

A major rural bank is warning that the agricultural export sector will be threatened by increasing competition from South America, Eastern-Europe and Asia in the future.

Rabobank's Agriculture in Focus 2014 report identifies several critical areas it believes need to be addressed by the industry and government to keep New Zealand near the front of the agricultural queue.

They include dealing with rising production costs both on-farm and beyond the farmgate, international market access and environmental regulatory pressures.

In the case of environmental responsibilities, Rabobank's general manager of Food and Agriculture research Luke Chandler said, those pressures will rise if the industry is to be sustainable in the future. "We need to obviously look at the implications of those changes and what it means for cost competitiveness into the world stage," he said.