Dairy farmer posts emo­tional re­sponse to calf abuse on­line

Matamata Chronicle - - What’s On -

A Waikato dairy farmer shocked by footage show­ing abuse to new­born calves says his heart­felt re­sponse has struck a chord with many oth­ers.

Aaron Robertson, a 50:50 sharemilker in Wal­ton, shot a video off the cuff, posted it to Face­book and within a few hours mes­sages of sup­port were pour­ing in.

‘‘We’re not mur­der­ers, we’re not an­i­mal abusers ... we’re hon­est fam­ily peo­ple making an hon­est liv­ing,’’ he said.

‘‘All I’m ask­ing is for you guys to have a bit of sense,’’ he said.

‘‘That’s not ev­ery­body,’’ he said of the hid­den­cam­era footage cap­tured by Farmwatch and an­i­mal wel­fare or­gan­i­sa­tion Safe. That’s only one per cent – 99 per cent of the farm­ers out there work their ar­ses off.’’

Robertson reg­u­larly keeps a blog where he posts light-hearted videos about his life as a dairy farmer, but see­ing the video and hear­ing the re­sponses from dif­fer­ent or­gan­i­sa­tions prompted him to make a video with a more se­ri­ous tone.

‘‘I was a bit shocked about it, I had to let peo­ple know that this doesn’t hap­pen on my dairy farm and it doesn’t hap­pen in the farms of peo­ple I know.’’

‘‘It was raw emo­tion that got to me and I had to get it out.’’

Robertson’s video has now been viewed more than 230,000 times, with al­most 5000 peo­ple it.

He said the re­sponse had been mainly pos­i­tive and had hit a nerve with other farm­ers, many of whom told him he had ver­balised how they felt.

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