Farmer backs his Van Diemen’s Land boss

The Western Star - - Rural Weekly -

FARM­ERS at Tas­ma­nia’s big­gest dairy op­er­a­tion say con­tro­versy over an­i­mal wel­fare and the op­er­a­tion’s man­age­ment have been blown out of pro­por­tion.

Dairy farmer Chris Brown has been farm­ing at the Van Diemen’s Land Com­pany for 12 years and is the only re­main­ing share farmer there since the op­er­a­tion was pur­chased by Chi­nese busi­ness­man Xian­feng Lu in 2016.

Mr Brown said he re­mains con­fi­dent in Mr Lu’s man­age­ment of the op­er­a­tion, de­spite a re­cent let­ter sent to the owner by a num­ber of staff out­lin­ing their con­cerns.

“The let­ter and this whole thing has got­ten a bit out of con­trol, it’s been blown com­pletely out of pro­por­tion,” he said.

Mr Brown said the aim of the let­ter, was to bring po­ten­tial is­sues to Mr Lu’s at­ten­tion and to en­sure that the staff would not be held re­spon­si­ble, if he chose not to in­vest in the ap­pro­pri­ate main­te­nance across the prop­erty.

How­ever Mr Brown said it was not in re­sponse to any cur­rent is­sues with an­i­mal wel­fare or oc­cu­pa­tional health and safety.

“Mr Lu is the owner, it’s not be­ing run as a cor­po­rate any­more and he’s a shrewd busi­ness­man,”he said.

SUP­PORTED: A farmer has backed Van Diemen’s Land Com­pany owner Lu Xian­feng.

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