WELLINGTON, N.Z. — Meat & Wool New Zealand’s decision to seek dollar-for-dollar market development investment from meat companies is a major step towards creating better partnerships in marketing New Zealand beef and lamb in global markets, M&WNZ relayed. The M&WNZ board is excited about the proposal because it builds on progress already achieved in numerous areas, said Chairman Mike Petersen.

"The collaborative effort that M&WNZ facilitates between farmers and meat companies is of immense value to sheep and beef farmers," he added. "It is vital that we have clear and consistent messages for promotion in a number of key markets."

Alliance continues to support M&WNZ and its market development activity for red meat, said Grant Cuff, Alliance chief executive officer. "We work with M&WNZ through both generic and joint venture programs, in the latter where we match farmer levy investments dollar for dollar," he added. "In the U.K., a market that remains strategically important for New Zealand lamb and which sets the tone for the world trade in sheep meat, we support M&WNZ's role in the development and implementation of promotional strategies and activities.

"In Germany, where lamb is a niche product, M&WNZ has worked in conjunction with two of our distributors and with our support to impact consumers’ purchase decisions by running in-store tasting programs for lamb," Mr. Cuff said.

M&WNZ has also worked with the meat industry to develop and increase the North Asian market for New Zealand exporters. This activity has been developed in partnership with industry and is now leading to growth that will benefit farmers in the medium and long term, said Mark Clarkson, managing director of ANZCO.

M&WNZ has also been looking towards emerging markets for new opportunities for New Zealand beef and lamb. Keith Cooper, c.e.o. of Silver Fern Farms, said this work was important in the world’s fastest-growing region.

"M&WNZ has proved to be a valuable partner with ANZCO, Alliance and Silver Fern Farms by supporting the Emerging Markets project, which is focusing on developing new opportunities for New Zealand red meat in China," he said. "With support from New Zealand Trade & Enterprise, this strategic project has seen M&WNZ act as the glue to support an exciting new collaborative opportunity."

The final Levy Proposal addresses farmers’ concerns raised during the consultation round about the level of meat company funding into Meat & Wool New Zealand’s market development work.

"The debate was not about the need for marketing and promotion, but about who pays," Mr. Petersen said. "The final proposal addresses this issue with a partnership approach over the next five-year period. We are seeking increasing amounts from meat companies for our market development programs in line with what farmers told us during the consultation round."