Live now
Start time
Playing for
End time
Listen live
Up next
Listen live on

Fed Farmers president Andrew Hoggard running for Act Party in Rangitīkei

The Country / NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Tue, 9 May 2023, 12:28PM
Photo / File

Fed Farmers president Andrew Hoggard running for Act Party in Rangitīkei

The Country / NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Tue, 9 May 2023, 12:28PM

Federated Farmers president Andrew Hoggard will contest this year’s general election as the Act Party candidate for Rangitīkei.

Hoggard, who is speaking to NZME’s The Country radio show at midday, confirmed to the Herald his intention to represent Act after leaving his role as Federated Farmers president, which he has held for three years.

Describing the move as “rural politics’ worst-kept secret”, Hoggard said he hadn’t been expecting to announce his venture into politics until June or July but rumours forced his hand.

“[When] people ask me a straight question, I have a really hard time bull*****ing,” Hoggard said with a laugh.

Hoggard said he joined the party about four years ago, also making a donation around that time.

“At that time, I just felt like [party leader David Seymour] was there on his own, he was standing on issues I thought were important and I respected, and I thought actually he’s doing a bloody good job and needs some support.”

ACT Party leader David Seymour. Photo / Dean Purcell

ACT Party leader David Seymour. Photo / Dean Purcell

Conversations between him and party members followed and with his three-year term with Federated Farmers nearing completion this year, Hoggard made the decision to run.

“Quite frankly, I felt like the job isn’t done yet and perhaps, with any luck, I might be able to effect more change inside Parliament with the Act Party.”

Hoggard, a dairy farmer near Feilding, expected to be the candidate for Rangitīkei but said they would only be campaigning for the party vote in that electorate.

Asked why he didn’t join the National Party, Hoggard said he had traditionally sympathised with Act’s values, including limited government, stripping back regulations and free speech.

He had not attempted to contact National, nor had he been approached by any National members about joining.

Despite leaving Federated Farmers slightly in the lurch, Hoggard said people in the organisation he’d been with for almost two decades had been supportive of his decision after he informed them two weeks ago.

Vice-president Wayne Langford would become acting president until the national AGM.

Hoggard commended the work of Act’s agriculture spokesman Mark Cameron in contributing to what he considered to be a shift in rural communities away from National to Act.

“To me, it seems what I pick up is the party is connecting with a lot of people, especially in the rural areas, and hopefully I can help build on that.”

In a statement, Seymour said he expected the party’s board would give Hoggard a high list placing.

”As a farmer and an industry leader, Andrew knows the issues farmers are facing as well as anyone in New Zealand.

”For the past three years, he’s been on the frontline representing farmers as Labour and the Greens have piled unworkable red tape on rural New Zealand.

”Andrew will make a superb MP and he and Mark Cameron will make a formidable team representing rural New Zealand.”

- Adam Pearse, NZH

Take your Radio, Podcasts and Music with you