Developing The Meat Industry Strategy

NEW ZEALAND - The New Zealand meat sector has launched the Meat Industry Strategy, which will look to improve relationships throughout the supply chain.
calendar icon 20 July 2010
clock icon 2 minute read

The initiation of the meat sector strategy is a critical step towards improved profitability within the sector, according to project Co-chairs Meat Industry Association (MIA) Chairman, Bill Falconer and Beef + Lamb New Zealand (B+LNZ) Chairman, Mike Petersen.

Mr Petersen says the concept of developing an overarching strategy for the meat sector was championed by the organisation previously known as Meat & Wool New Zealand during last year’s referendum debate, when farmers expressed frustration at volatile and marginal profitability.

“We are delighted that through the Meat Industry Association, the processor/exporter part of the sector also sees the need to do this, and is prepared to work alongside farmers in identifying the opportunities for step-change improvement.”

B+LNZ, MIA, New Zealand Trade and Enterprise and MAF have agreed terms of reference and funding for Phase one of a two stage strategy process, which entails an overarching ‘umbrella’ study of the issues and opportunities across the sector from market to farm. Mr Petersen and Mr Falconer are optimistic that there will be a number of ‘quick-wins’ identified from that Phase one process.

In Phase two, willing industry participants will collaborate to adopt and implement initiatives to drive change. These may include research & innovation, market development or whole of supply-chain initiatives.

Mr Falconer expects Phase one to be complete in the first quarter of 2011.

Federated Farmers has pledged its full support to the development of a Meat Industry Strategy.

Mr Falconer stresses the project will focus on identifying opportunities across the value chain from market to farm, not on proposing new commercial structures.

“Value in any debate around industry strategy can only come from robust analysis that objectively demonstrates the opportunities for improved profitability.

This project will identify opportunities that participants within the supply chain can evaluate and invest in on their merits.”

Mr Petersen expects the strategy will have a five to 10 year outlook, but immediate opportunities within the value chain will be identified for rapid action.

“The meat sector continues to represent nearly $6 billion in export receipts and supports tens of thousands of jobs across the country,” says Mr Petersen.

“The support of both MAF and New Zealand Trade and Enterprise demonstrates that Government appreciates the significance of this strategy work, not only in terms of profitability within the sector but also its ongoing contribution to the New Zealand economy.”

Mr Petersen and Mr Falconer say it is critical that this strategy is owned and developed by the sector, for the sector.

“This collaborative approach will certainly have its challenges but we have no doubt this is the only way to deliver step-wise profitability improvements for the sector,” says Mr Petersen.

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