Sheep and beef farmers are being encouraged to vote in meat
company director elections. Photo by Beef and Lamb New
Meat Industry Excellence is urging farmers to vote in
Alliance Group and Silver Fern Farms' director elections,
saying it is vital their voices are heard.
Voting papers have now been sent to shareholders of both
co-operatives, whose annual meetings are being held later
Sheep and beef farmers should be as active about their
ownership of their co-operatives as they were about their own
farms, MIE chairman John McCarthy said.
''It is essential if we are to send a strong message around a
new direction that we, as farmers, get out and vote.
''Not to participate means quite simply that we get the
future we deserve,'' he said.
The elections might prove to be a ''watershed'' and he also
urged farmers to make time to attend the annual meetings.
''A strong presence, although it will be at personal cost,
especially for those in the South travelling to the Alliance
one in Dannevirke, will send a definitive message to that
''A strong integrated co-operative model would be capable of
winning back supply to 60% and then taking industry
consolidation further,'' he said.
West Otago farmer Richard Young and Gisborne farmer Dan
Jex-Blake are both standing for the board of Silver Fern
Farms, along with incumbent director David Shaw, from
Clinton, for two positions.
Voting closes on December 13 and the company's annual meeting
is being held in Dunedin on December 18.
Alliance Group's chairman Murray Taggart, from Oxford, and
fellow incumbent director Jason Miller (Southdown) are both
seeking re-election, while Waikaka Valley farmer Don Morrison
is also seeking a place on the board.
Voting closes on December 11 and the results will be
announced at the company's annual meeting in Dannevirke on
In Silver Fern Farms' annual report, released this week,
chairman Eoin Garden and chief executive Keith Cooper said
this year's loss had not diminished the company's resolve to
advance options for industry reform, nor had it limited its
ability to invest in its long-term strategy to achieve
greater sustainability for the company.
The company has engaged consultancy firm
PricewaterhouseCoopers to undertake a strategic review of its
business, focusing on future options.
In Alliance Group's annual report, chairman Murray Taggart
and chief executive Grant Cuff said the company had been
involved with other major industry participants trying to
derive a constructive model for the future of the industry.
A tentative proposal for reform was reached which was
assessed to promote capacity rationalisation among processing
companies and lead to improved efficiency in the procurement
and processing of livestock. In-market benefits were
logically expected to ensue.
Implementation of the model would require widespread
agreement with other industry participants, producers and
legislative change and, to date, the necessary agreement of
other participating companies was not apparent.
Alliance Group remained involved in the process and was
receptive to addressing any proposal which realistically had
the potential of meeting the long-term industry objective,