Trade Me has announced livestock sales and livestock feed sales will be permitted while New Zealand is at COVID-19 alert level 4 after concerns were raised about animal welfare during lockdown.
Head of marketplace Lisa Stewart said Trade Me had worked with both Federated Farmers and the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) to understand the issue.
"With typical public livestock sales closed due to the lockdown, farmers are restricted in how they sell their livestock at this busy time of year.
"There is an animal welfare issue at stake, farmers need to move stock if they won't have enough feed for the coming months," said Stewart
"Trade Me is a registered essential seller with MPI, so we are able to provide this service to farmers. We hope this will help them to move and buy the animals they need during the lockdown."
Federated Farmers Meat & Wool Chair Miles Anderson said the Trade Me platform will be useful for farmers.
"We've got pretty much a perfect storm of factors impacting animal feed - the COVID-19 complications, drought in many parts of the country and under-powered meat processing capability due to lockdown restrictions.
"Opening up Trade Me to livestock sales and livestock feed sales gives farmers another option to deal with some of the issues they're facing," said Anderson.
Trade Me is also opening up a number of other farming, forestry and industry categories, which will allow members to buy and sell other approved essentials.
Stewart said that the safety of their members continued to be their top priority.
"Cash sales will not be permitted and we'll be asking our buyers and sellers to abide by our COVID-19 safe trading guidelines at all times.
"Anyone who is not following our rules will be suspended from our site," she said.