19 Aug 2010

Farmer representatives support meat marketing plans

6:00 am on 19 August 2010

The leader of a new farmer group says it wants to work with meat companies to improve sheep and beef profitability, not fight with them.

Sarah von Dadelszen, who heads the Realise Industry Potential (RIP) group, says it strongly supports the seven year research and innovation programme that Silver Fern Farms, Landcorp and PGG Wrightson have initiated with Government funding support.

She's confident farmers can change their traditional stock supply practices to fit the market-driven approach once they're made fully aware of what's needed, and hopes other meat companies will join the plate-to-pasture initiative.

Ms von Dadelszen says if individuals are going to get in the way of the greater good they need to reconsider their position in the industry.

John Gregan, who chaired the former South Island-based farmer action group that campaigned for meat company mergers, welcomes the marketing initiative, coming hard on the heels of the agreement to develop a new strategy for the industry.

He says some "serious money" is being thrown at the problem.