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ApiNZ Levy Proposal

ApiNZ Commodity Levy Proposal

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Pretty much agreed good Sir. Some type of compromise is called for I think. 

Perhaps a one entity that fairly represents all interested parties in the Beekeepers register. I think now that perhaps (only perhaps) that APINZ is not that body.

Edited by Ali

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8 hours ago, Ali said:

Pretty much agreed good Sir. Some type of compromise is called for I think. 

Perhaps a one entity that fairly represents all interested parties in the Beekeepers register. I think now that perhaps (only perhaps) that APINZ is not that body.

Whatever body is proposed needs to actively engage with all parts of the Industry so that no part feels disenfranchised: I can't say this couldn't be APINZ but whoever it is needs to engage with all parts of the Industry at ground level!

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11 hours ago, Jose Thayil said:

Did anyone get the email from AFB PMP Management saying about the results from the survey they did and due to the amount of people who are against the levy increases they are not going to do it this year? 

Yes I received the same email

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On ‎16‎/‎08‎/‎2018 at 3:58 PM, Don Mac said:

I attended the Hamilton Commodity Levy meeting yesterday.

One key observation I have to share.

Young beekeepers were in the majority supportive of the levy. I think they could see that a levy would increase research for helping their futures as beekeepers.

 

Grey haired old beekeepers were against it, and most of them will not be active beekeepers in a few years.

I am still not sure of their motive, but some have done well out of the last levy that contributed some funding for manuka research.

 

One beekeeper lamented the fact his bees were affected adversely by big beekeepers dumping large numbers of hives in his area.

There is no research being conducted on the bee stocking/carrying capacity of our different environments to date. 

A levy could well fund this type of research. 

I quote the results of direct contact with a good number of commercial beekeepers (per: 'Back up the truck APINZ forum')

I spoke to plenty of younger beekeepers who were predominantly anti the current APINZ proposal and older beekeepers who reflected the same views.

I've got a few grey hairs having been exposed to the industry all my life and having farmed 2000 hives in the early 80's and respect the opinions of the young and the older generations together.

I suggest you ignore the age question and look more deeply at the  message and see if its inclusive and will work!

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I'm quite old but not very grey so I don't know where I fit. I would happily pay a levy for research but don't want a bar of Apinz

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@john berry suggestion that levy payers choose where they want their money to go is a really good one.

i would be much happier knowing my money was going to what I considered a good cause. 

If there is a levy I’m still very unhappy about paying the same amount per kg on our bush honey as someone pays for their Manuka honey and still think it’s unfair targeting only honey producers when there are so many people doing other things with their bees who won’t be charged.

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The levy proposal that is up for discussion allows for an annual vote by those who pay the levy to have an annual vote on the science programme.

So Yesbut you will get a chance to put forward your proposal as will John Berry and Frazzled.

 

Just read this weeks Rural News over lunch. I think the online copy comes out tomorrow.
Two articles quote MPI Minister Damien O'Connor talking at the Annual Conference of the NZ Institute of Primary Industry Management.
Front page  "Get used to it "Damien O'Connor quoted as saying  "Get used to it" when referring to increasing costs for the primary sector.
Page three, "Wake up to challenges - O'Connor". Damien O'Connor makes two comments worth repeating.
He said that more R&D spending is required in the whole economy. 

"If industries don't see the need to do this they are going to fail anyway. We are not going to subsidise...we went beyond that in the 1980s."
So more R&D is required, but the Government will not fund it.

Plant & Food's Bee Research on AFB is coming from Australian funding as reported last week by Dr Mark Goodwin.


Damien O'COnnor also identified Residues in agriculture products as being a key issue for the future. "The ability to test around residues is going up and up".
Note; Comvita reported finding phthlates (plasticisers used in plastics and some insecticides - we do not know which ones) in propolis at the Conference.

The US FDA reported in 2016 the discovery of glyphosate residues in honey.

How they have got there we do not know?

 

At Conference Minister O'Connor made it clear that beekeepers better do their paper work - especially reporting hives and apiary sites.

He gave us a choice "track the hives or track the bees". Tracking hives is a lot easier you would agree.

The NAIT Act 2012 is primarily for bovine and cervidea animals, but Appendix 1 can be extended by the Minister to include Bees if the AFB Management Agency cannot get full compliance by beekeepers.

If beekeepers fail to keep their AFB records up to date then the AFB scheme may possibly be managed under the NAIT Act in the future and no one will like that.

 

If you have full hive traceability you will all end up similar to the Hort industry exports are managed today. 

    Required hive treatment diary - not just a harvest declaration.

    Annual or biannual inspections by overseas buyers or their representatives based on GAP - 'Good Apicultural Practice' for us.

    Change in power from the regulator to the BIG buyer - just ask Zespri why they do not have neonicotinoids on their spray programme. The answer is because their overseas customers       want to protect our bees, not because a regulator said no.

    Bee product traceability from hive to consumer - it is already in place in the meat industry.

    Residue testing of every export shipment - that is every bee product batch leaving your honey house . All food shipments to China, Korea, Japan, USA and EU are now subject to residue      testing on arrival. That is why C4s are a problem. 

    A horticulture grower/exporter 5 years ago spent less than $10,000 a year on residue testing, they now spend that amount every month!

 

Do not think life should be simpler because it is unlikely to happen. 

We need more research and new science to keep our heads above the level of the market. 

Edited by Don Mac
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1 hour ago, Trevor Gillbanks said:
On Thursday 23 August, I went to the ApiNZ Commodity Levy Roadshow meeting.
I have delayed posting this information for a couple of days as I needed to get my head around all the information. (and there was a lot of information.)
 
There were about 40 people present.
4 from APiNZ,  Bruce the Ind Chair, Karen Kos,, @Dennis Crowley and 1 other APiNZ member (Sorry I missed the name)Andrew Pallesen policy analyst
 
Russell Berry, Mark Goodwin, Roger and Linda Brey,  along with several other NZ Beekeeping Society member (Not sure how many)
Roger Brey videoed the meeting.
About 25 plus members from SNI Beekeeping Group.
Overall, I was disappointed that there were so few other beekeepers present considering that there are more than 1000 beekeepers within the catchment area of this meeting.  Was that because of lack of interest or lack of notification of the meeting.  I don't know.
 
The meeting was very well run and structured.  Pretty much all questions got answered and the meeting was held in a pretty good atmosphere.
 
The meeting was robust with lots of questions:
 
New Board Structure.  If the levy goes thru, then the levy payers must (legal) have better representation probably 5,3,1  We suggested 6,2,1 (this is my preferred option and i will be pushing for this at next exec meeting)with 6 levy payers,  2 packers and 1 hobby rep.
Vote to be 1 to 30 Oct. We suggested the vote should be deferred to around April.  To give everyone more time to think about it. There is never a good time for the vote, but we asked for more time to consider all the information
To carry vote:  50% of votes cast must be in favour, Of those in favour, they must have 50% plus of the hives (not hives, on honey volume, it is whatever the levy is being placed on) that the voting members own. (tricky bit of numbers).
The vote is in two parts, first you have to have 50%or more votes yes, then those vote yes must also have 50%or more of honey volume. If they don't have 50%or more of the volume its a no vote, also if the no vote has 50% or more its a no vote and the honey volume dosen't come into it as it was voted no.
Levy Guide lines looked pretty good (How they plan to divide up the loot).
Small volume suppliers of honey will be deleted from voting (under 800kg)(suggested kgs). This makes sense as the small honey produces will really not be paying the levy and it will be very difficult to collect effectively.
Hobbyists, No vote unless over 800 kg.(by declaration on voting forms)
(1 vote /kg (not sure if I heard this correct.) This was only mentioned once and I did not get a chance to follow up on it.The 1 person 1 vote is only for voting yes or no to the levy, once the levy is in place then the voting is weighted by volume, which is how the act is written.
Discussion around value of honey as % rather than 10c/kg. Value is to difficult to administer and would cost a lot to collect. there is a possibility that we may have a two different c/kg non-manuka and manuka.   Difficult to administer.  Sell price of honey.
Extraction levy is also difficult but it will be up to the beekeeper to pay the bill to the extractor to pay to levy administrator.  No pay the fee, not able to sell the honey. I liked this idea and it could be done via the portal on the ecert but there was a little dissension about this.
Lots more discussion around this, one suggestion is that RMP facility lets APINZ know beekeepers honey volume, and APINZ raises invoice direct to beekeeper, under a CLA some private info such as honey volume, type and who is allowed to be collected, but nothing around where it came from as that is not what this is about. Perhaps the RMP lets APINZ know volume after extraction but invoice to beekeepers not raised for perhaps 5-6months to give time to finnish season and fine buyer.
Confusion over the extractor maybe collecting to fees.  More work needed in this area.
6 year life cycle of levy then must be voted for again.
Whole thing is being rushed too fast and they need to consult more. The end proposal could still be placed in October mag for everyone to see and we will give some thought to a vote in the April mag, as I mention there is a Exec meeting next week that all the suggestions will be discussed.
 
I felt that this was a pretty good presentation and well run meeting.
I felt the the feeling within the meeting was that the levy was a good idea and probably needed. However, the general feeling was that APINZ should not be the body to hold/control this money.
I did not like the idea that if you pay the levy you automatically become a member of APINZ. Lets not become hung up on this, when you pay your levy yes you are member but you can opt out of membership, but you still get to vote how the levy money used, thats the law. Lets be clear how this would change the make up of APINZ, everyone who pays the levy has a say on what the funds are used for and how much, not and I repeat not APINZ, APINZ is only the Pan Industry Body holding the warrant if you like to run the CLA. The 5-6 levy paying board members will be voted on to the board by only levy paying members, so anyone from any group as long as they are levy payers can stand and be voted on to the board. The other members on the board have no vote on the levy, but they may have a good proposition that the levy payers may be happing to put funds into, but not with out voting for it. However, you can opt out of being a member but you still have to pay the membership fee and you get no voting rights. Wrong, the only membership fee to pay is those who are not levy payers and yes they do not get to vote on the levy as they don't pay for it.  This would make APINZ the Pan group representing beekeepers(the whole industry) by default.  (Not a good idea in my opinion)
Make time to go to a meeting near you, (if there is one)
I also felt that if the vote still goes ahead in October, then the Commodity Levy will fail.  If APINZ consolidate all the meeting information and sort this out, present to all beekeepers (via the AFBPMP booklets that come out) and then have the vote in April, the Commodity levy will pass.  We do need the Commodity Levy, it is just that we need more time to think out all the aspects of it.
I hope APINZ listened.
 
I hope all that makes sense.
 
Trev

Thanks Trevor I have just clarified some things in red. The changes to the proposal above have been suggestions from feedback we have received, which has always been the idea around these roadshows. We are having a board meeting next week in Napier Tuesday to discuss the suggestions.It has been interesting to see similar suggestions slowly rising through all the other noise from all the different locations, the proposal put up was always a starting point from which to progress to what most(you will never get 100%) would fine acceptable. Come up and say hello if you at any other meetings.

Edited by Dennis Crowley
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12 minutes ago, Dennis Crowley said:

Thanks Trevor I have just clarified some things in red. The changes to the proposal above have been suggestions from feedback we have received, which has always been the idea around these roadshows. We are having a board meeting next week in Napier Tuesday to discuss the suggestions.It has been interesting to see similar suggestions slowly rising through all the other noise from all the different locations, the proposal put up was always a starting point from which to progress to what most(you will never get 100%) would fine acceptable. Come up and say hello if you at any other meetings.

Thanks @Dennis Crowley I knew I had missed a couple of points.  Thanks for clearing those.

As I said.  I am now in favor of the Levy, but just not the timetable of October vote.  However, I am sure the board will be taking all this feed back into consideration.

I was impressed with how the meeting was conducted.

Thanks.

 

Sorry I did not get a chance to catch up with you.

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Gisborne meeting is a couple of days away (Monday). Will you be at that one @Dennis Crowley ?

Looks like there will be a few of us there from this forum mob

 

for those going to the meeting and want to know what science (AFB or other topics from the list Pike posted) is being done then a few of the @ApiNZ Science & Research group will be there - feel free to ask. 

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1 hour ago, JohnF said:

Gisborne meeting is a couple of days away (Monday). Will you be at that one @Dennis Crowley ?

Looks like there will be a few of us there from this forum mob

 

for those going to the meeting and want to know what science (AFB or other topics from the list Pike posted) is being done then a few of the @ApiNZ Science & Research group will be there - feel free to ask. 

 

Yes ill be driving down in the morn

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Nice to meet you @Dennis Crowley.  

 

The meeting in Gisborne was long with a great deal of discussion after the presentation by ApiNZ.

 

Other than what both Trevor & Dennis have already mentioned was that the Levy payers could become the shapers of any form of the future board of ApiNZ

 

 

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I went to the meeting.. sort of.. Riley had a little bit to say, she thought it was pretty boring, she prefers to stay home and read books.

So I didn’t catch as much as I would’ve liked, question time is always my favourite part of any consultation meeting.

 

Didn’t really take much away from it.

40% research is pretty crap average.

Wasn’t overly impressed because that’s about the only thing I deem worthy.

 

I am not against a commodity levy if it’s allocated properly but I have serious doubts as to wether or not ApiNZ are going to get their 50% support.

I do think that a commodity levy has the potential to be a very good thing.. but it is also just another bill to pay, and god knows we all love those.

 

Definitely not interested in the levy board being comprised of anyone who isn’t paying the levy, don’t really understand why there needs to be marketers or hobbyists on the board unless they’re paying - sure they can have suggestions bought to the board but no pay = no say in my book.

I also would be quite interested to know what constitutes a ‘beekeeper’ in APINZs eyes, because I have a feeling they may have a very loose interpretation of that.

 

Probably my biggest issue is that as it stands there is a serious loophole with some people needing to self declare as to how much honey they have extracted, and it’s a more than a little naieve to assume this isn’t going to be abused.

Where this levy is going to be collected is probably the most important detail and I wasn’t convinced they had it covered.

 

If ApiNZ are as in touch with the industry as they claim to be, why the heck are they doing this now??? Probably the stupidest time of year to try and get industry opinions on something this important.

This entire thing could fall by the wayside because of bad timing.

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6 hours ago, Bron said:

Nice to meet you @Dennis Crowley.  

 

The meeting in Gisborne was long with a great deal of discussion after the presentation by ApiNZ.

 

Other than what both Trevor & Dennis have already mentioned was that the Levy payers could become the shapers of any form of the future board of ApiNZ

 

 

Nice to meet you to Bron. 

yes the levy payers have the say.

 

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I produce some honey (maybe a little over a tonne in a good year) but none of it goes through an RMP facility and it is all sold on the local market. 

I assume from all the information that the commodity levy will only ever apply to RMP honey (as RMP operators are where honey crops that get levied will be calculated)?

 

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6 minutes ago, Otto said:

I produce some honey (maybe a little over a tonne in a good year) but none of it goes through an RMP facility and it is all sold on the local market. 

I assume from all the information that the commodity levy will only ever apply to RMP honey (as RMP operators are where honey crops that get levied will be calculated)?

 

You may have to self declare depending where they set the cut off weight from my understanding 

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Well we had the commodity levy roadshow yesterday and it was well attended and pretty well run. I am in favour of a commodity levy. I am concerned that if it goes ahead then apiculture New Zealand will effectively become the only commercial beekeeping organisation as every beekeeper who produces more than 800 kg will automatically belong. That may be a good thing or that could turn out that the corporate's have way too much say and people like me no say at all. At least at the moment you have to want to be a member whereas if we all have to be members we may see a return to serious conflict within the organisation. I did ask if there was any way levy payers could say who their payment go to but I was told this was not possible. I can't imagine they want to but I can see no reason why they couldn't collect the money and then pass it on according to the levy payers wishes either to New Zealand beekeeping or I research group.
It's a pretty serious decision we're going to have to vote on soon, I have yet to make up my mind how I will vote but there is no doubt in my mind that New Zealand bee science is desperately in need of adequate funding.

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11 minutes ago, john berry said:

. .  but there is no doubt in my mind that New Zealand bee science is desperately in need of adequate funding.

 

*some* funding would even be a good start John . . . and with leveraging, could get to 'adequate'

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Yes, I agree funding for research is needed. But would like it to see independent of which group (organisation) one belongs to. A bit worried when "politics" comes into it.

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I'm not sure you can avoid politics when *any* group is tasked with managing $2 million. 

You could set up another group but then who is on that group and why is more of the levy money now being spent on administrating it?

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