13 Aug 2014

Maori authority joins forces with Beef + Lamb

8:23 pm on 13 August 2014

Two men brought in by a Maori authority and farmer-owned industry body to help develop Maori sheep and beef farmer productivity and profit will start their roles in the North Island.

The Federation of Maori Authorities and Beef and Lamb New Zealand have created two new joint roles for people to work with both organisations.

Anaru Smiler and William McMillan have been appointed as Kaiarahi Ahuwhenua Sheep and Beef.

Beef + Lamb chief executive Dr Scott Champion said nearly 20 percent of New Zealand land was in Maori ownership and a large proportion of the whenua use was in sheep and beef farms.

FoMA chief executive Te Horipo Karaitiana said the collaboration was a perfect fit.

He said with 621,000 hectares of land being run by Maori farmers in the sheep and beef sector it made sense to join up with a key industry partner such as Beef + Lamb to optimise development on the whenua.

Mr Karaitiana said both of the men would be working alongside farmers.

He said Mr Smiler and Mr McMillan will be working out in the field with Maori agribusiness entities.

Mr Karaitiana said their main focus would be firstly on the Far North, and the East Coast including Gisborne and Hawke's Bay.

Anaru Smiler worked as a senior analyst for the Ministry of Primary Industries where he developed and implemented a Maori Agribusiness programme.

William McMillan is a well-known agribusiness consultant with both a PhD in animal science (sheep) from Massey University and an MBA from Waikato University.

The Federation of Maori Authorities (FoMA) and Beef + Lamb New Zealand have created two new jobs, which focus on helping support Maori farmers.

The Federation of Maori Authorities (FoMA) and Beef + Lamb New Zealand have created two new jobs, which focus on helping support Maori farmers. Photo: PHOTO NZ