Lack of contribution from grassroots
NEW Zealand sheep farmers had until February 24, to voluntarily invest in the proposed Wools of New Zealand national initiative to improve the return on their wool clip.
Unfortunately, the indication was that many grassroots sheep farmers had not made that financial contribution to a fund that needed to be at least NZ$5 million.
The proposed initiative was to form a company to secure the worldwide recognised for quality of product New Zealand Wool trade marks, that now really have no meaningful owner in many farmers’ point of view.
Farmers who subscribed would become shareholders of this company and benefit from a disciplined marketing strategy for promotion of wool products, and give essential industry direction.
If the fund-raising initiative did not reach the required minimum that needs to be invested, there would be no ‘‘body corporate’’ formed to promote wool produced in New Zealand and lead the way forward.
Hinuera sheep farmer Craig Alexander has made an investment commitment to the fund trustees, in that challenge to raise $5 million.
He supports the strategy to achieve realistic returns from good management of NZ Wool brands, plus the ability to control the whole process from consumer back to the producer.
Currently, the idiosyncrasy of wool auctions is the only market price setter with people ‘‘clicking the ticket’’ before the farmer gets paid for his efforts to produce a top quality product.
Mr Alexander said farmers don’t do a good job to promote wool for a realistic return by an investment in our industry, then they will ‘‘flounder with no direction’’.
‘‘If we accept prices we are receiving today, then that will be an unsustainable position for wool growers. The industry needs to change, we farmers have to make it change.’’