Merry Christmas from NZKGI
2019 marked 25 years for NZKGI and was a year of strong growth for the organisation. The Forum has been very busy with input into many important decisions for Growers.
Within the labour portfolio we recruited Gavin Stagg as our new Labour Coordinator funded by the Provincial Growth Fund. We also implemented the Labour Attraction Strategy for the first time this year to attract pickers and packers for the 2019 harvest. Gavin has already started on rolling out the Attraction Strategy for the 2020 harvest. In addition to these, the labour portfolio has shown more tangible outputs with its labour needs analysis, work to prevent labour exploitation, work around the provision of seasonal accommodation as well as management of the RSE programme.
Within the Education portfolio we recruited Di Holloway as our new Education Coordinator with funding from the Provincial Growth Fund via Horticulture NZ. The Education portfolio has had another very busy year with the successful Cultivate Your Career, BOP Young Fruit Grower competition and Future Leader events. The 2019 version of The Kiwifruit book was also recently released and is a valuable resource to both students and new growers. The Education portfolio continues to be involved in the Horticulture Capability Group and work in education policy. NZKGI is also involved in the Katikati Innovative Horticulture Project to create a centre of horticultural education at Katikati College.
We have also had changes in the Organisation portfolio, with the recruitment of Tanya Vickers as our Executive Assistant in a part time role. It’s been great having Tanya on board, especially with her assisting with Forum and Executive Committee meetings and other support as the organisation takes on more responsibilities. In other Organisation matters, this year also saw the move of the office to the new Zespri building and the staff have settled in well.
In the Performance & Supply portfolio, NZKGI recruited Margot Cotter this year to replace Lynda McCalman. The portfolio continues supply and payment oversight, including ISG representation. The portfolio has provided supply agreement training as well as the publication of Zespri KPI’s. A review of 2018 Hayward Cost of Quality has also been completed.
The External Relations portfolio has had a very busy year with both central and local government. Much of this year’s focus has been on water strategy and water policy as well as toilets on orchards and seasonal accommodation.
The Industry Stability portfolio continues to work to support the SPE as well as to foster central government relationships. IKO is an important part of NZKGI’s international grower relations strategy, and we look forward to this being held in New Zealand next year.
The Communications portfolio continues to manage media for growers on industry topics. NZKGI’s 25th anniversary was a highlight for the year and it was great to celebrate it with growers and other leaders from across the industry. NZKGI also launched its Kiwifruit Pioneers book this year.
So here’s to another 25 years of NZKGI.
– Doug Brown, NZKGI Chairman.