Horticulture board elects its new president
The Horticulture New Zealand board has elected Barry O’neil as its new president and chairman.
Mr O’neil replaces Julian Raine, who has been President and Chairman for six years and who has made a significant contribution to horticulture for New Zealand. Mr Raine has stood down to pursue other business interests.
Bernadine Guilleux was elected Vice-president, with both positions effective from 1 January 2019.
“Barry O’neil has an impressive background and is well placed to lead the extraordinary growth in horticulture that is not without the challenges of access to land, water and people to enable that growth,” outgoing President Julian Raine says. “He will be well supported by Bernadine. Barry’s knowledge about biosecurity globally will also be an asset to growers.
“This has been a fantastic, interesting, challenging and rewarding leadership role for me, and I know it will be the same for Barry.” .
Mr O’neil has been a grower since 1984. Since 2003, he has been growing kiwifruit in Katikati. He held a number of government roles including New Zealand Trade Counsellor to the European Union and Chief Veterinary Officer for the Ministry of Agriculture. He lobbied for, and in 2005 led, the first entity wanting to achieve an integrated approach to biosecurity, Biosecurity New Zealand. He was the chief executive of Kiwifruit Vine Health for six years, driving industry recovery from Psa, and has held a number of board positions including deputy chair of Scion, Chair of Tomatoes NZ, and Chair of the kauri dieback review panel. He has been an independent director on the Horticulture New Zealand board since April 2015, but will now stand as a grower-elected director at the 2019 elections.
“These are exciting times for horticulture as the world catches on to our vision of: healthy food for all forever,” Mr O’neil says. “While I have a strong background in governance, government and as a grower, I am excited about working with growers to find a better future — for both us and our grandchildren.”
Bernadine Guilleux is a grower representative on the Horticulture New Zealand board. She has a strong marketing background, in New Zealand and Europe. She is a member of the Balle family and grew up in the vegetable growing area of Pukekohe.