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MIAG backs Meat Industry Taskforce

MIAG backs Meat Industry Taskforce

18 January 2007

After suggesting an industry summit in November of last year, the Meat Industry Action Group, is pleased that Meat and Wool NZ has taken up the challenge and initiated the formation of a meat industry taskforce.

MIAG Chairman Keith Milne said at that time it was critical to involve key people with expertise, marketing and industry experience, not necessarily from just within the meat industry.

“We have also been calling for the development of a industry-wide strategic plan.

“We are pleased that Meat & Wool have chosen an independent chairman for the taskforce, from outside the industry with extensive experience and who has huge respect in the business community.”
Mr Milne said he had received much feedback since the Alliance Group Ltd board elections on December 14 with many suggestions of possible ways forward for the industry.

“With this in mind, we see the make up of the taskforce as being critical to its success. Farmers must be effectively represented on the taskforce.

“To quote one farmer who contacted me: ‘Will it be full of energetic, driven, market-led free thinking non-biased people or a bunch of tired old industry codgers protecting vested interests and the status quo’?”
It is also important that farmers “buy into” the recommendations of the taskforce. But this won’t happen unless their viewpoint and contribution from the grass-roots level of the industry is taken on-board.
Mr Milne also believed that the terms of reference of the taskforce was critical.

“They must be broad enough to investigate all options and they must have timelines incorporated into them.

“These timelines must be workable, definitive and they must have an end result that farmers can have confidence in. It is essential that any tasks assigned to sectors or groups have mandatory completion dates.”
MIAG Vice-Chairman John Gregan was also adamant that something positive must come from the taskforce.

“It is heartening that Meat and Wool has recognised the urgency of the issue.

“But we don’t need a repeat of the McKinsey report. We need recommendations that will help this industry out of its present crisis.

“Any recommendations the taskforce makes need to be worth implementing.”

ENDS

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