24 Aug 2009

Turners and Growers sets out position on monopoly

12:54 pm on 24 August 2009

The fruit and produce company Turners and Growers writing to kiwifruit growers this week to outline its position on kiwifruit marketer Zespri's monopoly of exports to all countries except Australia.

Turners and Growers asked the Government in June to end the monopoly and in a detailed paper accused Zespri of abusing its power and breaking the rules under which it operates.

Last month Turners and Growers began court proceedings to challenge the legality of the 1999 Kiwifruit Export Regulations.

Chief executive Jeff Wesley says part of the letter to growers will counter what the company describes as misleading information growers have been given.

That includes information on the apple industry, which he says has been very successful since deregulation.

Mr Wesley says the company may organise a series of meetings in all kiwifruit growing regions depending on the grower response to the its letter.

The national kiwifruit growers' organisation, along with post-harvest operators and Zespri, have voiced strong opposition so far to any moves to end the existing single desk marketing structure.