Pres­i­dent’s word

This is the last time you will have to en­dure my ram­blings as I step down at the end of this month.

NZ Grower - - Contents -

Farewell and thanks

There has al­ways been a will­ing­ness to help and con­trib­ute when I have asked for it.

I have re­ally en­joyed my time on the board of Hor­ti­cul­ture New Zealand. It has broad­ened my knowl­edge of the wider in­dus­try, al­lowed me to see some great op­er­a­tions and in­ter­act with some fan­tas­tic peo­ple. There have been highs and lows, suc­cesses and dis­as­ters but I have al­ways had the knowl­edge that it’s a great in­dus­try of which to be part. Who wouldn’t want to rep­re­sent and lead an in­dus­try that pro­duces such great healthy food? At the Novem­ber board meet­ing Barry O’Neil was ap­pointed my suc­ces­sor. I wish Barry and the rest of the team all the best for the fu­ture. He and I have spent the last few weeks en­sur­ing that the hand-over will be smooth. It’s largely busi­ness as usual but with a dif­fer­ent face, style and back­ground knowl­edge. I have pledged my sup­port and will do ev­ery­thing pos­si­ble to make Barry’s tran­si­tion a suc­cess.

Barry brings a wealth of knowl­edge, ex­pe­ri­ence and skills. He is well known in the ki­wifruit in­dus­try and has a broad cross-sec­tion of con­tacts across the wider hor­ti­cul­ture sec­tor.

The change will be good for Hor­ti­cul­ture NZ. Things will be done dif­fer­ently, fresh eyes will see new ways of achiev­ing bet­ter out­comes and the or­gan­i­sa­tion will rise to new heights. To the grow­ers, staff, of­fi­cials, and key stake­hold­ers it has been great work­ing with you and I thank you for your con­tri­bu­tion to as­sist me dur­ing my time on the board. There has al­ways been a will­ing­ness to help and con­trib­ute when I have asked for it. Work­ing to­gether al­ways has been my mantra and I see it the best way of get­ting dif­fi­cult things done.

We might not have al­ways agreed on some is­sues but over­all there has been strong con­sen­sus on the di­rec­tion and goals. There are some chewy is­sues still to be ad­dressed and these things will take time, more de­bate, fur­ther thought and good lead­er­ship. Some of these that spring to mind in­clude;

• Cli­mate change and our con­tri­bu­tion to re­duc­ing our in­dus­try’s foot­print to­wards net zero car­bon by 2050.

• Gene-edit­ing and the role it will play in our fu­ture plant breed­ing.

• En­vi­ron­men­tal prop­erty plans, mon­i­tor­ing and re­port­ing re­quire­ments.

• Grow­ing enough peo­ple, equipped with the skills and knowl­edge to al­low the con­tin­ued growth of our sec­tor.

• Keep­ing food af­ford­able on the home front while adding value to the ex­port sec­tor.

• En­sur­ing there’s ad­e­quate in­fras­truc­ture pro­vided by re­gional and cen­tral Gov­ern­ment to al­low for our con­tin­ued growth.

• Pro­tec­tion and man­age­ment of our most pro­duc­tive land for food pro­duc­tion.

• Re­duc­tion of ar­ti­fi­cial in­puts and find­ing more sus­tain­able al­ter­na­tives.

• The en­cour­age­ment of new in­vest­ment in in­tel­lec­tual prop­erty, tech­nol­ogy and science.

• The for­ma­tion of new al­liances and strength­en­ing ex­ist­ing re­la­tion­ships across our in­dus­try and the broader ru­ral sec­tor.

So there’s still much to work on at var­i­ous lev­els, but I leave in the knowl­edge we are in good shape and match-fit for the fu­ture.

You will still see me around; strangely I en­joy at­tend­ing con­fer­ences and the in­for­ma­tion gained, the re­la­tion­ships formed and the thought provo­ca­tions made. Of­ten just get­ting out from be­hind the far­m­gate and see­ing what other peo­ple are do­ing is stim­u­lat­ing enough to go home re­freshed and will­ing to try some­thing new.

In clos­ing and my fi­nal mes­sage to you all, I wish ev­ery­one a Merry Christ­mas and pros­per­ous fu­ture. En­joy some valu­able time do­ing noth­ing in the next few weeks or at least for a day, re­lax­ing with fam­ily and friends. For the first time in many years I in­tend to prac­tice what I preach and will take some time out in Jan­uary…af­ter the boy­sen­berry har­vest!

Cheers and all the best, Ju­lian

Pres­i­dent's word Ju­lian Raine | Pres­i­dent HortNZ

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