Prosecutions against Open Country Dairy
Waikato, New Zealand based dairy manufacturer Open Country Dairy was accused of causing a decrease in the quality of life of the local community. The problem was an odor that the manufacturing facility was producing.
Regional Council of the Waikato area received over 100 reports from 43 separate businesses with complaints related to severe smell causing major damage to the health and life quality of neighbors. Reports were received between January and February 2019, and since then the investigation was taken. The court decision was released on Monday (07.09.2020).
The smell was caused by the inadequate infrastructure of the company’s manufacture. It caused breathing problems for the many citizens of Waikato. Some of the local businesses had to shut down, as the odor was unbearable, and was even more disturbing as the heatwave hit New Zealand back then. Waikato Regional Council set a $120,000 fine and stated as follows, “The purposes of the trust include assisting and promoting projects and facilities in the community, supporting people and organizations who operate to relieve poverty or advance education, and payment of actual out-of-pocket expenses for community members from the offending.
In total the company faced five prosecutions by the Waikato Regional Council under the Resource Management Act. Prosecutions cover the time between 2007 and 2020, all of them referring to environmental contamination and objectionable odor.