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Salmon farm 'frippery'

Further to my 'very loose' word of the day series (see also The joy of words - an anodyne kitten and Fancy an inkle anyone?), I was struck by the use of 'frippery' in a recent interview about the aquaculture in the Marlborough Sounds.

The word was used by Te Tau Ihu customary fisheries forum chairman Richard Bradley in an interview with Kathryn Ryan, to describe the government's reference to new space earmarked for the relocation of King Salmon's existing farms as 'relocation' space, to get around the fact (as Te Tau Ihu sees it) that it had previously told the iwi that there was no new aquaculture space to give them as part of their Treaty settlement. Bradley referred to this as 'having an edge of frippery'.

This sent me scrambling for my dictionary, to find that 'frippery' means:

-finery in dress, especially when showy, gaudy, or the like.

-empty display; ostentation.

I don't think Bradley was suggesting that government officials were dressing in ball gowns and tiaras or rolling up in Lamborghinis (I would have liked to have seen photographic evidence if so), so I suspect he was using the word in its latter sense.

What I like about the word too is that it conjures a sense of the Victorian era - our colonial past. I suspect that this was probably not unintentional on Bradley's part. Discussions about Crown-iwi relations today are always framed within the context of interactions of the past.

You can read more about aquaculture space and iwi concerns in this article on Stuff.

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