Is­sues aired at MG meet­ing

The Orchardist - - Contents - By Les­ley Wil­son

MG Mar­ket­ing’s re­cent AGM ap­pears to have been the per­fect plat­form for is­sues to be aired and progress to be made. One core is­sue rankling grow­ers has been that MG Mar­ket­ing has started grow­ing crops in its own right and in what ap­pears to be di­rect com­pe­ti­tion to its co­op­er­a­tive mem­bers.

A grower who has been out-spo­ken on this is­sue is Brett Wharf of New Zealand Hot­house.

Brett says that they were gen­er­ally very pleased with the hear­ing they were given at the AGM and were pleas­antly sur­prised at the amount of sup­port from other share­hold­ers. “Firstly, I would like to con­grat­u­late the board to date.The com­pany has been very suc­cess­ful but this suc­cess has cre­ated the cur­rent con­fu­sion.”

Mr Wharf says that MG has been func­tion­ing more as a com­pany than a co-op­er­a­tive but that this isn’t al­ways the best for mem­bers of the co-op­er­a­tive. He is happy that there will be a re­view of the man­date the co-op is run un­der. One of the main ques­tions will be, should MG be func­tion­ing as a com­pany or a co-op­er­a­tive.

Re­mits put for­ward by Mr Wharf and his as­so­ci­ates were not able to be heard at the AGM but the board has un­der­taken to have a look at th­ese and come back to Wharf in the near fu­ture. “As I say, I am pleased with the hear­ing we got and it is now up to the board to lis­ten to the mood of the share­hold­ers. The view is that by MG hav­ing grow­ing op­er­a­tions they end up un­in­ten­tion­ally com­pet­ing with other co-op mem­bers. Ob­vi­ously we are at a bit of a cross­roads,” he adds.

Brian Gargiulo, chair­man of MG, says that the board will look at the con­cerns of grow­ers but could place no time frame on a re­sponse.

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