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Challenges for new Pipfruit body.

Media Statement
February 4, 2000

For immediate release

Challenges for new Pipfruit body.

Pipfruit Growers New Zealand Inc’s new chairman, Phil Alison reports that there is widespread concern that pipfruit growers are the financial losers as a result of deficiencies in the new pipfruit regulations.

Speaking after the first meeting of the PGNZI’s new Grower Forum, Mr Alison said grower representatives had expressed disquiet over the gap between the practical realities of the regulations and the plan the industry agreed to with the previous Government.

“It appears that that there are holes in the regulatory framework that need to be addressed quickly or we face losing the benefits of the restructuring package. All of the costs are flowing through, but few of the benefits.”

“This is a difficult time for our industry and the regulatory framework needs to be strong enough to provide a practical framework for the future profitability of the industry.

“This is a $750 million dollar industry! We cannot simply sit back and wait to see if things turn out right. Our own businesses, and the 12,000 employees within the industry, have too much at stake.”

Mr Alison said the new PGNZI Grower Forum, set up as part of the industry restructuring, provides a strong representative body to push for better regulatory support. The elected members of the Forum represent a wide range of viewpoints and the first meeting demonstrated that there is a desire to use their combined strengths to ensure real financial benefits are achieved for growers, their staff and their communities.

The new 27 person Forum met for the first time on 28th January and replaces an eight member committee. The forum members were elected from growers within the eight regional districts and they have agreed to an executive of five persons to manage the society’s day to day business. The executive committee is;
Phil Alison (chair) Hawke’s Bay
Michael Hoddy (deputy chair) Nelson
Julian Raine Nelson
Ru Collin Hawke’s Bay
Paul Paynter Hawke’s Bay.

“The Forum sees itself, together with other industry stakeholders, as having an important role in restoring the profitability that we know our industry can achieve. PGNZI has a chance to provide some concise and unified advice to decision makers and marketers.”

Mr Alison paid tribute to the commitment and leadership of retiring members of the executive and said he was looking forward to working with all members of the new Forum.
“Our main purpose is very, very simple - to deliver a more profitable future for pipfruit growers”

Ends

Media contact: Phil Alison 06-878-4556 025-440-347


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