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Maori label objections 'lunacy': NZ First

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 16/11/2016

New Zealand wine and spirits makers will be able to register their geographical origins to make it easier to promote in overseas markets, after parliament passed new legislation.

Producers who make goods from a particular part of New Zealand and meet certain requirements will be able to use the Geographical Indicators, to acknowledge quality, reputation and other characteristics.

But New Zealand First primary industries spokesman Richard Prosser says it's "utter lunacy" to require consultation of the Maori Advisory Committee over wine and spirit labels that might cause offence.

"It's race-based decision making that could inhibit New Zealand producers' ability to use their preferred branding," he said.

"It is separatist and divisive, it is insultingly patronising and paternalistic to Maori and is a backward step in terms of race relations, especially in terms of one law for all in New Zealand."

The Intellectual Property Office of New Zealand will administer the indicators, which are expected to come into use next year.

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