A recent decision by the Ministry of Education to award a contract to an American company to fit over 600 rural schools with synthetic carpet has seen uproar from the rural sector.
Leader of the National Party Christopher Luxon told REX host Dominic George that while he is excited by the potential of wool in New Zealand, he can understand why this decision might have been made from an economic standpoint.
"Ultimately they've got to get good value for money for the taxpayer as well," he said.
Luxon admitted he hasn't had a comprehensive look at the specific reasons behind the decision but could empathise with the logic behind an international contract for synthetic carpets.
"There may be a criteria in there for some sort of economic benefit to the country."
If elected, the National Party leader said his job is to open up foreign markets to sell to and harvest an innovation network that is creating opportunities going forward in wool and other rural sectors.
When questioned on whether his party would back the agricultural sector based on his defence of the choice to install 600 synthetic carpets over New Zealand-grown wool alternatives, Luxon told George there is potential for changes around procurement criteria in these sorts of situations.
"If there is an opportunity for us to do it and actually put a consideration in around economics and employment but equally you've got to balance that out to make sure the taxpayer gets good value for money."
He also talked specifically about the innovative nature of wool in New Zealand and how exciting the future of the industry is currently looking.
Listen to the full chat between National Party Leader and Dominic George above.