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Commodity Levy / Fight for the Industrys future?

RISK OF CLOSURE

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Industry Future / Commodity Levy

 

Opening (In my opinion):

  1. APINZ are the professional organisation capable of managing the levy and being the head organisation representing the industry moving forward

    Caveat: Albeit they are in need of more extensive commercial industry input which would following a yes vote deliver the potential to build APINZ into a fantastic head industry organisation.

     

  2. While NZ Beekeeping Inc. boast experienced beekeepers with plenty of nous and interest in the long term viability of small to larger beekeeping enterprises I don’t consider they are the vehicle to take the industry forward at this juncture.

    Comment: As a voting bloc NZ Beekeeping Inc.’s experienced heads and industry nous combined with the professional structure of APINZ could be built into a vehicle to serve the industry outstandingly for the foreseeable future.

Points:

  1. Forget the personalities and the bickering and the unmoving idealists, this is the opportunity to combine for the elusive goal of industry good!

     

  2. Forget the anti-corporate perspective as Beekeeping itself will level things here: The corporate model just doesn’t work on a beekeeping/hives in the field level and as various corporates work this out and move to alternate share-farming/equity models we will hopefully see a rise in individual Beekeeping Business opportunities for the up and coming in the industry!  

     

  3. Forget the Manuka producers should pay more perspective: Just set the levy at a level accommodating to all (I suggest 10c/kg fits the bill) or do we bitch endlessly of the inequities of various industry income streams!                               

     

  4. Forget the Manuka’s ruining the industry perspective as follows:             

  1. Manuka’s not responsible for the Honeydew, Bush-blend and Pasture-blend price collapse; it has however been responsible for providing those producers considerable additional income over the last few years. The fact blenders can no longer pay over the odds for these lines doesn’t cancel the previous benefits received.

  2. Overstocking: Well if the perceived income from Manuka production wasn’t there this problem wouldn’t exist so hands up Manuka you’re responsible for this one: However I’m sure (after many tears and tantrums) the industry will find its own level in this regard: The legal/regulatory alternative will only hurt the small to medium operators as its nothing more than a legal minefield (and we don’t want lawyers owning the industry by default).

     

  1. If we want to move forward and maintain our international marketing/income edge we need to research and deliver:

    1. Rational research/projects which benefits the protection, growth, survival and success of commercial beekeeping in NZ.

    2. Protection for brand ‘Manuka’ backing those at the coalface doing the work both at home and internationally!

    3. The researched benefits and marketing packages for all styles of NZ Honey

 

In Closing:

We have two choices:

  1. Vote Yes and move forward with all the unity we can muster while retaining the individuality and input gained from the individuals and various lobbying/interest groups/organisations/voting blocs the industries awash with!

     

  2. Vote No and see the industry wallow in a self-perpetuating interest group scrapping mess with no particular direction: Leaving the door open to influences from any entity or group that can gain the ear of MPI and/or the minister.

     

  • We’re sitting on the cusp of being able to look past our personal agendas and move towards establishing a vehicle to enhance the long term viability of the industry.

     

  • APINZ may not be perfect, but they’re professional, up and going and worked correctly all groups and organisations will have the ability to influence structure, direction and decision making of the renewed organisation following a yes vote.

Just my thoughts folks; but above all else please vote!

Keith Rodie

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Thanks

 

your point about NZ Beekeeping Inc potential to be a voting bloc within APINZ is a really interesting one.  I hope someone from NZ Beekeeping Inc takes this on board and has a serious discussion on it.

 

i could imagine this as a useful fallback position for them if the levy goes ahead - mop up all the smaller and disenfranchised beekeepers and operate as a voting bloc on levy matters...

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3 minutes ago, Pinnacle said:

Thanks

 

your point about NZ Beekeeping Inc potential to be a voting bloc within APINZ is a really interesting one.  I hope someone from NZ Beekeeping Inc takes this on board and has a serious discussion on it.

 

i could imagine this as a useful fallback position for them if the levy goes ahead - mop up all the smaller and disenfranchised beekeepers and operate as a voting bloc on levy matters...

Hopefully not just a fall-back position Pinnacle but a rational way of moving forward in a manner which benefits the Commercial Sector

 

The alternative doesn't impress me in the slightest!

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7 minutes ago, Pinnacle said:

Thanks

 

your point about NZ Beekeeping Inc potential to be a voting bloc within APINZ is a really interesting one.  I hope someone from NZ Beekeeping Inc takes this on board and has a serious discussion on it.

 

i could imagine this as a useful fallback position for them if the levy goes ahead - mop up all the smaller and disenfranchised beekeepers and operate as a voting bloc on levy matters...

The reality is that NZ Beekeeping arose out of those who left the executive group set up to combine the NBA and FF BIG. They left when they realised that the head-in-hive real beekeepers were effectively going to be out-voted once the new ApiNZ executive was formed. The spreading of votes to those who are not primarily beekeepers has certainly not brought in the subscriptions expected judging by the lack of disclosure of membership numbers. Important to note that those not primarily commercial beekeepers have currently 45% of the executive vote - do they have 45% of the membership?  Commercial beekeepers have 45% and the supposed hobby (FF BIG) member 10%. Now @Don Mac  do you think NZ Beekeeping should be grateful for a few crumbs/votes? The system has not been a success from a poorly researched and rushed manuka standard, inequitable raise on AFB levies and a proposed honey levy to help keep ApiNZ afloat.

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4 minutes ago, Sailabee said:

Commercial beekeepers have 45% and the supposed hobby (FF BIG) member 10%

Sailabee - Once again you have your facts wrong.  FF BIG was not a hobby group.

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5 minutes ago, Sailabee said:

The reality is that NZ Beekeeping arose out of those who left the executive group set up to combine the NBA and FF BIG. They left when they realised that the head-in-hive real beekeepers were effectively going to be out-voted once the new ApiNZ executive was formed. The spreading of votes to those who are not primarily beekeepers has certainly not brought in the subscriptions expected judging by the lack of disclosure of membership numbers. Important to note that those not primarily commercial beekeepers have currently 45% of the executive vote - do they have 45% of the membership?  Commercial beekeepers have 45% and the supposed hobby (FF BIG) member 10%. Now @Don Mac  do you think NZ Beekeeping should be grateful for a few crumbs/votes? The system has not been a success from a poorly researched and rushed manuka standard, inequitable raise on AFB levies and a proposed honey levy to help keep ApiNZ afloat.

History's there for everyone to remember; personalities and personal-politicking shouldn't dominate.

I'm not saying APINZ have been the organisation that was envisaged when it came to be but I am saying that with 'rational thought and input and a YES vote'' it could be just what is required to represent the Commercial Beekeepers / Levy payers for the foreseeable future.

Honestly are we prepared to look at putting in place the voluntary run organisations of the past or are we wanting a 'professionally run organisation' representing us under our stewardship.

Every organisation active today has the ability to instigate voting blocks to ensure APINZ bats predominantly for the Commercial Sector.

This isn't rocket science: Its a way forward!

 

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The inception of ApiNZ was only four years ago, therefore in such a short time frame can't possibly be the organisation we all envisaged.  The Commodity Levy is just another step in the right direction to create a vibrant industry that we all want to be part of.  No industry body, existing on the goodwill of volunteers, can take any sector into the future.  From ground roots to the board office, we need a myriad of people with all their various areas of expertise, experience and personalities, to provide succession in every aspect of the industry.  Yes, commercial beekeepers are the basis of the industry and this must not be forgotten, but there are a heap of skills commercial beekeepers cannot provide, and many of these people are in the Non Commercial Sector membership.  I would imagine with the Levy, there will be some transference of memberships from the commercial to the non commercial sector, and vice versa.  Along with hobbyists, the non commercial sector also includes retired beekeepers, beekeeping employees, cropping farmers, administrators, the scientific community, education providers, auditors, and after the Levy is introduced those with more than 26 hives that are not honey producers.  At the end of the day ApiNZ is a peak body.   

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31 minutes ago, Margaret Anne said:

At the end of the day ApiNZ is a peak body.   

At the end of the day APINZ is attempting to become the peak body by way of compulsion not choice or vote. Not the way it should be done at all. 

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@Ali There is certainly a vote on at present.  You can find details here: www.apinz.org.nz/levy  ApiNZ does not have the powers to make a levy compulsory. 

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5 hours ago, Frederick said:

APINZ are the professional organisation capable of managing the levy and being the head organisation representing the industry moving forward

Caveat: Albeit they are in need of more extensive commercial industry input which would following a yes vote deliver the potential to build APINZ a fantastic head industry organisation.

APINZ's professionalism has been brought into question by many. The very manner in which the levy (APINZ empowerment levy is what it should be called!) proposal has been structured and promoted is highly questionable.

All the matters you mention are just fine and dandy, an ideal perhaps (without the corporate slave share beekeeping bit) but are what should have been sorted (amongst many things) well before the current levy (industry capture) proposal.

It is naive beyond any reasonable belief to think that those in control in APINZ are not very aware of all of this. 

Simply because there is nothing else immediately available to vote for does not mean anyone should vote for this proposal. APINZ has cleverly constructed the current proposal at a time that they feel (claim) it is a foregone conclusion by way of hive numbers in the bag already.

That is not the way a service to industry body properly operates. It is a blatant grab at the money, power and control of the majority of beekeepers who do not support APINZ currently but would be compelled to should the levy vote be passed.

The bait for many is the 'research' promise which has no apparent plan of any kind (at least not disclosed). As said elsewhere the poll results on the research spend does not bind APINZ in any fashion.

This is not 'professional' conduct.

It is overall nothing short of an iniquitous way in which to fund APINZ (60% of the monies) and the agenda they have.

Edited by Ali
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15 minutes ago, Ali said:

At the end of the day APINZ is attempting to become the peak body by way of compulsion not choice or vote. Not the way it should be done at all. 

If you take the negative line you could vaguely argue the point.

 

However the reason I started this separate forum rather than commenting under the others currently running was in an effort to instil a positive line of discussion on how to move forward together under the only option  currently on the table, and make no mistake it is an option which could work and would be ideally suit the commercial sector.

 

The negatives being voiced elsewhere seem more in line with doomsday predictions and those looking for reasons to discredit rather than build on the thing that is APINZ: OK as I acknowledge above its not the perfect vehicle at the moment but with the right tweaking following a YES vote it'll provide commercial beekeeping with fantastic representation.

 

How's that for positive!

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3 minutes ago, Ali said:

APINZ's professionalism has been brought into question by many. The very manner in which the levy (APINZ empowerment levy is what it should be called!) proposal has been structured and promoted is highly questionable.

All the matters you mention are just fine and dandy, an ideal perhaps (without the corporate slave share beekeeping bit) but are what should have been sorted (amongst many things) well before the current levy (industry capture) proposal.

It is naive beyond any reasonable belief to think that those in control in APINZ are not very aware of all of this. 

Simply because there is nothing else immediately available to vote for does not mean anyone should vote for this proposal. APINZ has cleverly constructed the current proposal at a time that they feel (claim) it is a foregone conclusion by way of hive numbers in the bag already.

That is not the way a service to industry body properly operates. It is a blatant grab at the money, power and control of the majority of beekeepers who do not support APINZ currently but would be compelled to should the levy vote be passed.

The bait for many is the 'research' promise which has no apparent plan of any kind (at least not disclosed). As said elsewhere the poll results on the research spend does not bind APINZ in any fashion.

This is not 'professional' conduct.

It is overall nothing short of an iniquitous way in which to fund APINZ (60% of the monies) and the agenda they have.

I quote again: The negatives being voiced elsewhere (and here) seem more in line with doomsday predictions and those looking for reasons to discredit rather than build on the thing that is APINZ: OK as I acknowledge above its not the perfect vehicle at the moment but with the right tweaking following a YES vote it'll provide commercial beekeeping with fantastic representation.

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2 minutes ago, Frederick said:

OK as I acknowledge above its not the perfect vehicle at the moment but with the right tweaking following a YES vote it'll provide commercial beekeeping with fantastic representation.

Cart before the horse I think. 

APINZ is a body with minmal support from the beekeepers of NZ.

Should they have gained (worked for!) the support of the majority first, before attempting to compell, I may have had a bit more faith.

There  is far too much doubt in regard where APINZ will take the industry and deliver our money.

There is no real 5-10 year plan (that is disclosed) other than ensuring their own survival by compulsion.

APINZ need to go back to the beginning and show they are worthy of the investment they are demanding by way of representation of all beekeepers and binding declaration of where they intend taking the industry. Real comittment not fluffy vague stuff that could be headed just about anywhere.

We don't have any real proposal from them other than a taking of our money and our choice of who leads this industry!

 

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33 minutes ago, ApiNZ Levy Proposal said:

@Ali There is certainly a vote on at present.  You can find details here: www.apinz.org.nz/levy  ApiNZ does not have the powers to make a levy compulsory. 

However it will become compulsory should this vote go through won't it??????

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@Ali Only if the majority of voters vote for it.  We cannot compel a levy, hence asking for beekeeper support by way of vote.

 

We do encourage voters to read the material on our website www.apinz.org.nz/levy

 

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16 minutes ago, Ali said:

Cart before the horse I think. 

APINZ is a body with minmal support from the beekeepers of NZ.

Should they have gained (worked for!) the support of the majority first, before attempting to compell, I may have had a bit more faith.

There  is far too much doubt in regard where APINZ will take the industry and deliver our money.

There is no real 5-10 year plan (that is disclosed) other than ensuring their own survival by compulsion.

APINZ need to go back to the beginning and show they are worthy of the investment they are demanding by way of representation of all beekeepers and binding declaration of where they intend taking the industry. Real comittment not fluffy vague stuff that could be headed just about anywhere.

We don't have any real proposal from them other than a taking of our money and our choice of who leads this industry!

 

Again the same negative diatribe expounded endlessly.

Positive input’s all that required:

  1. Real commitment: Well I suggest APINZ are showing that and the commercial sector inclusive NZ Beekeeping Inc. should show the same by engaging and having a say by way of voting block and general input!

  2. 5-10 year plan: Hey the outlines there and I’m happy to see the plan evolve once the YES votes in.

  3. They’re not ‘TAKING YOUR MONEY’ they’re attempting to involve you and the rest of the commercial block in working through a plan to enhance and fund the industry’s future!

  4. There no ‘Back to the future here! The futures in front of us: If you want fluffy vague stuff look to the volunteer groups that think they can take us forward.

There’s a ‘way to an ends’ sitting in front of us which will prove acceptable to the industry if given a chance!

Give it a chance Ali if it turns to custard vote it out in 6 years; but again let’s discuss/look to the positives!

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26 minutes ago, Ali said:

It is overall nothing short of an iniquitous way in which to fund APINZ (60% of the monies) and the agenda they have.

 

So once again I re-state my earlier comment @Ali (words in bold) below:

On ‎28‎/‎01‎/‎2019 at 2:00 PM, JohnF said:

It has been repeatedly said that levy funds cannot be used to fund the operation of the organisation.; under the Commodity Levy Act. 

You are deliberately spreading information you know to be untrue

 

 I'd like to ask the questions:

- has anyone been affected by the Cororapa syndrome aka Coromandel spring dwindling?

- If yes, what did you do about it? (requeen? restock boxes with a split etc?)

- did you recognise the signs?

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1 minute ago, JohnF said:

 

So once again I re-state my earlier comment @Ali (words in bold) below:

 

 I'd like to ask the questions:

- has anyone been affected by the Cororapa syndrome aka Coromandel spring dwindling?

- If yes, what did you do about it? (requeen? restock boxes with a split etc?)

- did you recognise the signs?

Crikey John

Did I miss the boat here??????????

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34 minutes ago, Ali said:

The bait for many is the 'research' promise which has no apparent plan of any kind (at least not disclosed). As said elsewhere the poll results on the research spend does not bind APINZ in any fashion.

 

 

Also said elsewhere @Ali is that priorities may change by the time any funds might become available. The words - deliberately twisted by you - were to indicate that what was important in the survey 6 months ago might not be so important next year - the chief example (also said elsewhere as I'm sure you remember) being varroa and the OA/GL staples of @Philbee

It is not the bait. It is possibly because I have been particularly vocal about research - one as doing research in this and a number of other industries as well as being a member of @ApiNZ Science & Research.

A number of people have voiced their desire for such research and so the tack taken is to call the research a ploy/bait/hook . . .have I left any out?

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3 minutes ago, Frederick said:

Crikey John

Did I miss the boat here??????????

 

I think you missed the order there @Frederick

First a reponse to Ali . . but then a few questions about Cororapa

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Sorry @Frederick - the quote I made was from another thread where Ali had once again stated that levy funds were to be used for the administration of ApiNZ.

I replied with the above but it seems Ali is still repeating it - despite knowing it to not permitted by the Commodity Levies Act

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4 minutes ago, JohnF said:

despite knowing it to not permitted by the Commodity Levies Act

LEVIES ACT  SECTION 10

(b)

subject to subsection (1) and paragraph (a), may specify all or any of the following purposes:

(viii)

day to day administration of the organisation’s activities (not being the administration, direct or indirect, of any commercial or trading activity undertaken by the organisation or on its behalf):

Edited by yesbut

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4 minutes ago, yesbut said:

LEVIES ACT  SECTION 10

(b)

subject to subsection (1) and paragraph (a), may specify all or any of the following purposes:

(viii)

day to day administration of the organisation’s activities (not being the administration, direct or indirect, of any commercial or trading activity undertaken by the organisation or on its behalf):

 

My understanding is that the administration (with the given figure of 10% in the levy pie-chart) is for the administration of the levy . . not the funding of ApiNZ itself. Is this correct @ApiNZ Levy Proposal ?

Edited by JohnF

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@Frederick - Is that the problem in a nutshell - "providing commercial beekeeping with fantastic representation"  - the issue seems to be that many do not feel that they are actually "commercial" - and certainly by past hive number definitions some were classified as hobby, some small commercial and then commercial (under the old system NBA) but there seems to be a prevailing feeling that APINZ is only there (or going to be there) for BIG commercial i.e thousands of hives and essentially only Manuka producers?     

We all know that volumes of hives does not equal good crop statistics nor does it equal good management and best practices in the field.   The major concern for me is that the lion's share of any levy will be paid by those of us who produce quite large volumes of non-Manuka honeys (as we have always done)  and are  actually concerned we will be  left wanting when it comes down to the focus of the spend budget.   There is the inevitable bone tossed around of finding 'another Manuka honey' but I am not entirely sure that the buying public will go for that.     Any South Island beekeeper will know which honey should have got the go, but is there any room for another honey from New Zealand that should or could be a medical product just like high-grade Manuka?   Are the buying entities going to accept it either - perhaps in the past but in today's rigorous testing regimes and potentially unmeetable MPI type standards, it just might be too hard... after all, they are just trade tariffs dressed up as standards.  

I understand that once the Levy is in place, all levy payers will automatically become members of APINZ and that the subs fees currently paid will be ceased and presumably the 10% gazetted for administration is the sum that is budgeted to cover what the industry subs already pay to it for its continued administration?   If a commodity levy is not able to be used for the running of an organisation, then how does this work out?    The rest of the budget suggested by APINZ - that is apparently up for a total rewrite if that is what the board dictates and with a viable representation of beekeepers who are "grass roots" as a voting bloc it should be a go-ahead system.   That is, if I have I understood the information correctly anyhow.     

 

Some incredibly dedicated, long-serving and well-experienced people are backing the commodity levy and I have to consider that when the decision is made to click Yes or No.  I think I understand how it is not possible to levy off Manuka production separately in this first instance because of the issues with the standard (MPI must come back to the table and sort this out and is the carrot that we must unify as a body first?)  and I definitely question 10 cents per kg if in fact your honey sells (or doesn't right now) for $4 per kg and you produce 3 times the national average crop.    Anyone who I have spoken to isn't really able to answer the inequity of that particular question because there isn't an answer  that is palatable.    Almost a disincentive to produce honey volumes of what are currently unsaleable bush, multi-floral and even mono-floral single sources honeys but then again, there simply isn't enough Manuka in all of NZ for us all to be feeding from that trough.  If there was, then it wouldn't be a rare high value honey, would it?      But, we need to stop the bickering and get on with being unified sometime and a peak body is needed for our industry.

 



 

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3 hours ago, Margaret Anne said:

Sailabee - Once again you have your facts wrong.  FF BIG was not a hobby group.

The person supposed to represent the hobby section is from Whangarei, always a FF BIG base, not the old NBA, and hobby beeks have not had a good deal under ApiNZ.

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