The Ministry for Primary Industries says it is "pulling out all stops'' to process existing Mycoplasma bovis compensation claims.

There has been criticism over how long the compensation process was taking, as well as uncertainty about what compensation farmers would be eligible for.

One affected farmer has described the process as "appalling''.

In a statement yesterday, MPI confirmed it had received 85 Mycoplasma bovis-related claims since the beginning of the response last year.


The currently-assessed values of all existing claims was just under $6million and MPI had paid out $2.5million, with a further $1.5million expected to be paid within the next fortnight.

MPI's director of response, Geoff Gwyn, said the ministry had not yet received compensation claims relating to its decision to direct the cull of 22,300 cattle on infected properties which was announced last month.

However, it was aware some farmers were nervous about time frames and he wanted to provide reassurance MPI was "running as fast and efficient process as possible''.

"We have, of course, been dealing with compensation claims throughout this response and I think both MPI and the industry have learnt a lot that will make the process more efficient,'' he said.

MPI would consider making part-payments to farmers of infected properties who were being required to cull their entire herd.

"We are pulling out all stops to process existing claims and are nearly halfway through these by value of the claims.

"We are significantly increasing staffing in our compensation team to do this, and to ensure we can work at pace when the claims for the 22,000 culled animals start coming through,'' he said.

MPI was directly contacting professional rural and farming advisers to offer specific training so they could better support farmers to complete their compensation claims.


Its latest stakeholder update confirmed two new infected properties, both dairy farms in the Ashburton area which were connected to already known infected properties.

The confirmation of two more farms was not unexpected and did not change MPI's view that the disease was not widespread in New Zealand.