Gathering of agri 'economic grunt'

Platinum Primary Producers (PPP) Group chairman Shane McManaway, of the Wairarapa, who will be in...
Platinum Primary Producers (PPP) Group chairman Shane McManaway, of the Wairarapa, who will be in Queenstown next week attending the 2014 PPP Conference, involving almost 200 top farming professionals from New Zealand and Australia. Photo supplied.
Almost 200 of Australia and New Zealand's leading agri-professionals will converge on Queenstown this week in what has been described as the ''biggest gathering of agricultural economic grunt in Australasia''.

The 2014 Platinum Primary Producers (PPP) Conference will be held in the resort for two days from today, led by Wairarapa deer and beef farmer Shane McManaway, also the chairman of the PPP Group.

About 60 of New Zealand's top farming professionals will be included in the conference, including representatives from Fonterra, Beef + Lamb, Silver Fern Farms, Federated Farmers, Shanghai Pengxin, Dairy Holdings, NZ Merino Co and the Ministry of Primary Industries.

The conference provides a platform for topical industry discussion and problem solving, giving farmers from both countries the chance to share and swap knowledge and experience.

''The PPP Group is now a powerful collective of the key rural movers and shakers in Australia and New Zealand.

''As such, our conference is fast becoming the must-attend networking event on the country calendar,'' Mr McManaway said.

The delegates are expected to debate food safety, succession planning, social media, trade opportunities, how to raise the positive profile of agriculture and men's health during the conference, themed ''Peaks & Valleys'', representing the ups and downs farmers experience - as well as the Queenstown landscape.

Keynote speakers include Beef + Lamb's resigning chairman Mike Petersen, Silver Fern Farm's chief executive Keith Cooper and Fonterra's John Monaghan, former All Black Richard Loe, Warriors nutritionist Lee-Ann Wann and men's health expert Bernie McKone.

Mr McManaway said details of a new industry award to recognise future agri leaders would also be announced at the conference.

The award had been created by members of the PPP Group in honour of the late Zanda McDonald, a PPP founding member and Australian beef industry representative who died last year following a farm accident.


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