NZPork chairman Ian Carter has described the last financial
year as ''something of a watershed'' for the industry,
despite the challenges it faces.
In the organisation's annual report, the North Otago pig
farmer said farmers had faced both a fluctuating schedule and
high grain prices.
For him, the year had reinforced the need for co-ordination
across the industry.
''For our industry to survive, all sectors need to add value,
not just cost,'' he said.
The Ministry for Primary Industries' proposed new import
health standards (IHS) for the importation of pork from
countries with porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome
(PRRS) remained an ongoing issue and used a substantial
amount of NZPork's resources.
The judicial review judgement, delivered in May, did not
support NZPork's position and the organisation then appealed
to the Court of Appeal in November. Judgement was expected
early this year.
NZPork was keen to work with the ministry to agree on a
process where scientists worked to resolve the differences in
the level of estimated risk around PRRS, Mr Carter said.
''We are also keen to ensure that the proposed IHS and
surveillance and response arrangements take into account fair
and reasonable risk assessment of all scientific evidence,''
The 2011-12 financial year ''ended with beginnings'' - a
range of new strategies and objectives, a new communications
approach, a renewed marketing campaign, a new budget and a
new business plan.
NZPork chief executive Owen Symmans said a strong strategy
for communications had been established, as the industry
needed consumers and stakeholders to understand what it
represented in terms of quality, food safety, animal welfare
practices and product.
The industry had many stakeholders, ''including a general
public that cares little and knows less about us, our product
and our practices''.
Negative publicity had ''cast a shadow'' over the industry in
the past and both retailers and the industry remained
sensitive to the issue.
''With increased marketing promotion, we can expect the
public to have a higher level of interest in our product and
''This is why it is essential that we manage our
reputation,'' Mr Symmans said.