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It is possible to have healthy waterways and a strong agricultural economy says Mike Cronin.

Fonterra's Managing Director of Co-operative Affairs told The Country Early Edition's Rowena Duncum that, while the co-op supported the goal of improving freshwater, it didn't have to be at the expense of farming.

"Sometimes it sounds like there's a bit of a debate between whether you can have healthy freshwater and a strong agricultural economy and we're really clear - you can have both" said Cronin.


"It's how you do that in a sensible way for our farmers that's the next part of the conversation".

Listen below:

Farmers had "deep" concerns around some of the details in the freshwater plan, but it didn't mean solutions couldn't be reached said Cronin.

"Even though they are significant, we think the best way is to work constructively with communities and the Government, because we think we can find solutions to those [concerns] and they're going to be in the best interests of our farmers and protecting dairying for the generations".

Also in today's interview: Cronin explained why Fonterra moved the date of its Annual Results announcement, updated the progress farmers are making with Farm Environment Plans and discussed the Fixed Milk Price event announced earlier this week.