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Changes to Transitional Process says Meat New Zealand and SheepCo

Meat NZ Chairman Jeff Grant and SheepCo Chairman Mike Petersen have today announced a revised transitional process for the proposed single organisation for red meat and wool levies. This is based upon feedback from farmers during the ongoing farmer consultation process, Grant and Petersen said.

"The changes to the constitution reflect the need for a faster transition to the new organisation's Board than was outlined in the draft of the constitution that was released earlier this year," Grant said.

The two boards have agreed that elections for three of the six farmer-elected director positions will be held prior to the establishment of the new single organisation, should the levy vote be successful, Petersen said. "Three existing directors from Meat New Zealand and SheepCo will carry over onto the new board and will come up for election within the first year. This is to ensure a smooth and speedy transition into the new organisation."

Petersen also announced a change from the proposal to have two wards instead of six. Having surveyed 1,500 farmers during the last consultation round, the boards have found that there was not overwhelming support for change from the current six ward system to a North and South Island two ward setup. We will be recommending in the final ballot paper retention of the six ward system," Petersen said.

Grant said some farmers had expressed concern during the last consultation round about having two industry-elected directors on the board of the new organisation. "The six farmer-elected directors on the new board will now seek nominations from the wider meat industry for representation on the new board, and appoint two industry directors in this role. They will also seek nominations for an independent director based upon the skill set that the new board may require to complement the other directors," he said.

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