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Greenpeace fundraiser Chris talks through our Smartfarming campaign.
Greenpeace took its Smartfarming message to the Central North Island at the weekend, with a presence at the hugely successful three-day Taupo ECOshow. Attended by about 3,000 people from all over the country and host to some fantastic international speakers, the lakeside event involved interactive workshops, presentations, product showcasing and stalls. The theme was ‘choosing sustainability’, with a real focus on taking positive and proactive solutions to the environmental challenges we face. And it followed hot the heels of the launch of Greenpeace’s new “smartfarming” web pages (www.greenpeace.org.nz/smartfarming) and cows-on-buses campaign.

The Greenpeace team had a stall at the show, and our Climate Campaigner Simon gave daily presentations about climate change and the work we’re doing in New Zealand. But we were mainly there to listen. After all, the Central North Island is home to many large scale dairy farms, and it’s where most of the deforestation is taking place to make way for corporate dairy farms. The lives of many of the people we talked to had been severely affected by this land use change.

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Visitors to the Greepeace stall were asked to put red pins on a map of the North Island where they knew of large scale deforestation taking place for intensive dairy farming.

We heard some real horror stories, mostly from farmers who’ve since seen the light and are now farming in less-intensive, more sustainable ways. They were really enthusiastic about our campaign and pleased people are finally talking about the issues.