Farmer appointed RMPP director

Jane Smith
Jane Smith
Five Forks farmer Jane Smith has been appointed an independent director on the board of the Red Meat Profit Partnership.

The RMPP is a red-meat sector and government collaboration designed to boost sheep and beef farmer productivity and profitability.

It is being funded by the Ministry for Primary Industries through its Primary Growth Partnership, as well as by industry partners Alliance Group, ANZCO Foods, ANZ Bank, Beef and Lamb New Zealand, Blue Sky Meats, Greenlea Premier Meats, Progressive Meats, Rabobank and Silver Fern Farms.

Mrs Smith (35) and her husband Blair - winners of the 2012 national Ballance Farm Environment Awards - run Newhaven Farms Ltd, a sheep, beef, forestry and dairy support operation in North Otago.

When contacted, Mrs Smith said the RMPP was a ''wonderful opportunity'' for the industry. However, it also presented a significant challenge and was quite a responsibility.

''We need to make sure we get these returns from these projects,'' she said.

Making it work and delivering on those things was not just for the board to do, but also all farmers, she said.

It was the first time in the history of the industry the various players had worked together on such an initiative, along with the Crown.

The RMPP's newly appointed board includes chairman Malcolm Bailey, Beef and Lamb NZ chief executive Scott Champion, Blue Sky Meats chairman Graham Cooney, Brown Glassford director Graham Brown and two independent directors - Lone Star Farms owner Tom Sturgess and Mrs Smith.

Mr Bailey said the programme was about taking on board the output of the red meat sector strategy - which was launched in 2011 with the aim of almost doubling the value of the sector's earnings - and setting up projects to deliver on various recommendations.

'' It's not about structural change in the industry, it's about focusing on what is within farmer control - and there is significant financial upside from these projects,'' he said.


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