Beef + Lamb New Zealand Welcomes Government Support For PGP
29 January 2013
Beef + Lamb New Zealand Welcomes Government Support For PGP Programme
Beef + Lamb New Zealand Chairman, Mike Petersen has welcomed the announcement by Wayne McNee, Director-General of the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI), of the Ministry’s commitment of up to $32.4 million from the Primary Growth Partnership Fund (PGP) for the red meat sector’s proposed $65 million, seven year, Collaboration for Sustainable Growth programme.
“This will be a huge boost for the sector and will accelerate progress in an increasingly collaborative approach across a range of issues that are important for sheep and beef farmers,” Mr Petersen said.
The Collaboration programme involves industry participants AFFCO, Alliance Group Ltd, ANZCO Foods, ANZ Bank, Beef + Lamb New Zealand, Blue Sky Meats, Deloitte, Progressive Meats, Rabobank and Silver Fern Farms, who following approval and contracting processes will match MPI’s investment and establish a joint venture entity to undertake the programme. The programme is open to new investors who can join once the programme starts.
Following approval and a commitment to co-fund the programme by MPI, farmers will now be asked to vote to support the farmer contribution for the programme through Beef + Lamb New Zealand. This will total up to $2.8 million per annum over seven years or a total of $19.7 million. Farmers will be asked to contribute approximately 30% of the total programme investment. With the other 70% coming from government and industry participants, the vote by farmers to be undertaken alongside the Beef + Lamb New Zealand Annual Meeting on the 8th March will enable the programme to progress.
“Beef + Lamb New Zealand has been working increasingly closely with meat processors in recent years through our joint venture market development programmes and collectively with processors and exporters via the Meat Industry Association (MIA). This opportunity extends that approach to supporting farmers behind the farm gate to help improve productivity and profitability. That’s very exciting and supports the tighter linkage and better communication across the farm gate that the sector has been looking for.
“The Collaboration programme also directly addresses a number of the issues highlighted in the Red Meat Sector Strategy that was developed by Beef + Lamb New Zealand, the MIA and government in 2011. Success in this programme will help farmers to unlock the opportunities identified behind the farm gate for better profitability.”
As well as strongly involving processors, the programme also builds on new relationships with banks such as ANZ and Rabobank and with the professional services firm Deloitte, to support the farm business as well as our traditional work in farm management,” Mr Petersen said.
Beef + Lamb New Zealand will be seeking farmer support over the coming weeks to invest the funds from a combination of New Zealand Meat Board Reserves, Beef + Lamb New Zealand Reserves and levy funds. Whilst New Zealand Meat Board approval and support is also required through a prescribed NZMB process, no levy increase will be required to support the programme. Significant New Zealand Meat Board reserves levels would still be retained in accordance with its policy of a contingency fund to support market recovery in the event of a significant biosecurity issue that disrupted New Zealand meat exports.
Voting materials to support farmer investment in this collaboration programme will be mailed to farmers with B+LNZ annual meeting information in early February, with the vote closing at the Beef + Lamb New Zealand Annual Meeting on 8th March. Information sessions will be held in each Beef + Lamb New Zealand region during February.
About Beef + Lamb New Zealand:
Beef + Lamb New Zealand Ltd is the farmer owned industry organisation representing New Zealand’s sheep and beef farmers. Beef + Lamb New Zealand Ltd invests farmer levies to help develop a growing sheep and beef industry providing sustainable returns for future generations. Beef + Lamb New Zealand has four programmes – Farm, Market, People and Information – to deliver innovative tools and services to support informed decision making, and continuous improvement in market access, product positioning and farming systems for New Zealand’s sheep and beef sector.