The pesticides regulatory authority says it does not have enough staff to undertake its work on time, even before it loses most of its regulatory scientists through the forced relocation to the northern NSW electorate of Agriculture Minister Barnaby Joyce.
One industry figure says the Australian Pesticide and Veterinary Medicines Authority is already "dysfunctional" and it will be a "train crash" if it moves to Armidale.
But Mr Joyce reiterated on Thursday his commitment to the move, backed up by his boss Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and the minister's office said if the the APVMA is struggling, it was an indication that changes were needed.
Mick Findlay, who runs Abbey Animal Health of Cooma, says he is waiting for the APVMA to process 12 product applications and they have all gone past the mandated statutory timeframes.
He says the Armidale move, which is opposed by all the industry lobby groups, will make a bad situation very much worse and is all about Mr Joyce "feathering his own nest".
APVMA Chief Executive Kareena Arthy has written to industry stakeholders saying her team that examined the residues left by farming chemicals was at half-strength.
"We are also understaffed at present in the pesticides, health assessment, environment and chemical review areas due to key staff being on long term leave, others departing the agency and difficulties recruiting suitably skilled and experienced people," Ms Arthy wrote.
The chief executive asked for feedback on whether she should adopt a "first-in first served" approach or prioritise applications for approval by type.
"Neither of these options are perfect, and there will be pressures on timeframes with both of the options," she wrote.
Mr Findlay, who is taking legal action to try to get the APVMA moving on his applications, says the Armidale move, which is opposed by all the industry lobby groups, will make a bad situation very much worse and is all about political advantage for Mr Joyce.
"It's a train wreck about to happen if they go to Armidale," Mr Findlay said.
"They haven't got the staff right now to meet their timeframes and if they lose more, their time frames are going to blow out even more.
"Everyone else is too frightened to have a go at these guys but its already a dysfunctional government department.
Mr Findlay said there was no sound basis for moving the APVMA and its 190 public servants to Armidale.
"Everybody is against the move to Armidale, there's no case for it at all," he said.
"The main claim is that it would bring the APVMA closer to farmers but the APVMA doesn't deal with farmers.
"It deals with manufacturers, industry, the Agriculture Department, people like that, it has very little contact with end users.
"It's all obviously politically motivated, Barnaby's feathering his own nest and that's fair enough, but what about the industry?"
But at an appearance in Armidale yesterday with the Prime Minister, Mr Joyce made it clear there would be no changes of heart.
"Remember, we are spending more on the renovations of Parliament House, about four times as much as what it costs to move APVMA here," he said.
"Let's cry no beer - Canberra is a beautiful city, a wonderful city, God bless Canberra.
"But let's make sure that the largess of our nation and a vision of our nation goes beyond one town in our nation."