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Maru Hoani

Ceracell co-op meeting

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What did come of the ceracell meeting? I ended up not going because it was fine and I still have 300 hives to staple check and feed before winter. 

 

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I didn't go because I did not wish to influence the meeting ,but I am interested in the outcome.

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Just now, john berry said:

I didn't go because I did not wish to influence the meeting ,but I am interested in the outcome.

You must be very influential if your presence alone would have had an effect...or is it that you couldn't trust yourself to have kept quiet ?

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I went .....  one of about twenty or so in Christchurch .... packers, merchandise sellers, commercial beekeepers and not so commercial.

 

It was more of getting a feeling out there for the sentiment of coming together to form a co op. 

Bruce is going to put together a "FeedBack" after the roadshow.

 

And of course, good things take time. We are probably looking at a two year set up time frame ..... which may well be two years too late for some.

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2 hours ago, john berry said:

I didn't go because I did not wish to influence the meeting ,but I am interested in the outcome.

pretty sure of yourself eh. guess beekeeping has got you to where you wanted to be then?

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Apart from the issue of overstocking I am quite happy with where I am as far as beekeeping and marketing goes. If I went to the meeting the chances of me keeping quiet would be pretty close to 0 and chances of me not being asked for my opinion would be about the same. 

Establishing a co-op is a big step with a lot of ramifications and I want those that want to be involved  to be able to make their own decisions .

I like the idea of co-op's but there are not many successful ones.

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@john berry if Arataki were be non existent tomorrow how would you fair as a small business?

I am just thinking out loud.

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I  think you commercial guys should seriously consider this(Co-op). Might be like a bag of fighting cats until you reach a consensus but if you wait for something else to look after your interests....good luck.

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14 minutes ago, mischief said:

Might be like a bag of fighting cats until you reach a consensus

Whatever makes you think that ?

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umm, ####ty human nature, oops I mean basic human nature.

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56 minutes ago, mischief said:

I  think you commercial guys should seriously consider this(Co-op). Might be like a bag of fighting cats until you reach a consensus but if you wait for something else to look after your interests....good luck.

If the markets aint open then a co-op will do diddly squat, you need market access to sell your product, just creating a co-op in its self isn't enough.when the market was flowing (even though it was through false and misleading products ie any honey mixed with a small of manuka) the access was fine and the co-op failed.

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Wrong....sorry.

Markets are there, always. People buy....always.

You guys have never had a co-op, you have never been a consolidated body looking after the interests of both the producer and the end buyer but have been at the mercy of those who have taken advantage of both.

if your market Has been based on false or misleading products then shame on you for letting this get so out of hand.

I dont think that is actually the case.

 

Something has changed. You all know it, just dont know exactly what is going on.

 

Worst case scenario is the 'market', such as it is, and it is not just about Manuka honey, is about to be opened up to overseas/chinese and lesser quality products.

What are you going to do about it. Cut each others throats like you have been doing or consolidate and find a solution that benefits everybody?

 

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44 minutes ago, mischief said:

 

Wrong....sorry.

Markets are there, always. People buy....always.

You guys have never had a co-op, you have never been a consolidated body looking after the interests of both the producer and the end buyer but have been at the mercy of those who have taken advantage of both.

 

Wrong sorry - the NZ Honey Producers CO-OP was founded in 1962 and operated for over 50 years - so we most definitely have had a co-op!!  As @Dennis Crowleyrightly pointed out it failed when the market was at its strongest - why/how could it succeed now??

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I can't help feeling that any Co-op big enough to compete on the world market would be too big for individual beekeeper shareholders to have much say in how it was run.

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So there is a co-op....it gets confusing when i also read that buyers havent got hold of producers leaving them stuck with full drum loads in their store rooms.

Makes it seem like you have to do your own selling.

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9 minutes ago, mischief said:

So there is a co-op....

 

Was

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10 hours ago, mischief said:

Wrong....sorry.

Markets are there, always. People buy....always.

You guys have never had a co-op, you have never been a consolidated body looking after the interests of both the producer and the end buyer but have been at the mercy of those who have taken advantage of both.

if your market Has been based on false or misleading products then shame on you for letting this get so out of hand.

I dont think that is actually the case.

 

Something has changed. You all know it, just dont know exactly what is going on.

 

Worst case scenario is the 'market', such as it is, and it is not just about Manuka honey, is about to be opened up to overseas/chinese and lesser quality products.

What are you going to do about it. Cut each others throats like you have been doing or consolidate and find a solution that benefits everybody?

 

 

NZ has had co-op or single desk selling for most of the last 100 years with the PPMD morphing into the HMA which was finally dismantled In the 70's. Add to this the Honey Co-Op based out of  Timaru that lasted 50 years.

 

You could also argue the major players such as Arataki, Airborne Honey,  Pure NZ Honey, and now Midlands are defacto co-ops as those companies have large loyal supply bases.

 

No the problem we have is we now produce three times more honey than we have done in the history of Beekeepeing in NZ, and we blindly expect the existing sellers to work harder to move bigger volumes of something not high on many consumers wish list.

 

If a new co-op can create a brand new market then hats off lets go, but if it is only going to displace existing product in an existing market, then not so exciting

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A co-op will only work if the suppliers are loyal to it.How can the coop buyers get the contracts overseas if they do not know how much honey they have.I was at the Greymouth meeting and hat off to Bruce for organising these meeting around N.Z.

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I produced 1500 boxes and slaved 7day weeks often from dark in the am to the early am and I'm still struggling to make it to next season, can't down size to a comfortable size because nobody's buying hives or honey it seems (for a reasonable rate) , hopefully this Co op gets sorted or another big company will take me on otherwise its probably going to fall over  in the next few seasons. 

I still haven't been gotten back to about half my honey so today have to ring and moan. Is this how it's meant to be??? 

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9 hours ago, Maru Hoani said:

I produced 1500 boxes and slaved 7day weeks often from dark in the am to the early am and I'm still struggling to make it to next season, can't down size to a comfortable size because nobody's buying hives or honey it seems (for a reasonable rate) , hopefully this Co op gets sorted or another big company will take me on otherwise its probably going to fall over  in the next few seasons. 

I still haven't been gotten back to about half my honey so today have to ring and moan. Is this how it's meant to be??? 

Sorry to say Maru, no one promised you a rose garden, just because you became a beekeeper and produce honey dosen't mean that someone has to buy your crop or owe you a living.

You are running a business, and like every other business in nz you have to decide if it is a goer or not. 

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Posted (edited)
9 hours ago, Maru Hoani said:

I produced 1500 boxes and slaved 7day weeks often from dark in the am to the early am and I'm still struggling to make it to next season, can't down size to a comfortable size because nobody's buying hives or honey it seems (for a reasonable rate) , hopefully this Co op gets sorted or another big company will take me on otherwise its probably going to fall over  in the next few seasons. 

I still haven't been gotten back to about half my honey so today have to ring and moan. Is this how it's meant to be??? 

I hear ya Brother . It 'aint easy out there, but you know what ..... there's you , me ,and several hundred others slaving away out there, wondering why the heck we are doing it. I have'nt drawn a wage for three years ..... we sold 80 or 90k of honey three seasons ago and apart from the odd drib and a drab ..... that's been it. The bees have been on skid street for quite  a few years now.

Whether you continue or not depends on how much grit you've got. How much stamina and passion and fire in yer belly to suck it in  and  grunt through the lean times, for lean they are. And how much faith you have  in the product that you are producing .... a wonder food that is more medicine than food ..... and how cunning you are to think outside the triangle  .... for the worst time to quit is when everyone else is .... because for sure as sure a rainbow will appear just when you least expect it.

And now, if you'll excuse me,  it's ben a long day and I have an appointment with The Doctor.

 

Edited by jamesc
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Common sense tells me that in order for a co-op to arise it's going to have to compete in the marketplace. The only way to do that without gigantic marketing effort which no-one will have the money to support will be by undercutting everyone else, on medium to longer term contract. The throngs of beeks hanging out to sell their several season's worth of stock will all be in like Flynn. Then a few years down the track when these longer term sale contracts start looking less appealing, are the rank and file kiwi beek members of the co-op going to buckle down and honour their co-op contracts or will they chase the higher dollars outside ? Just like last time.

Someone will tell me how wrong I am.

 

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Posted (edited)
41 minutes ago, yesbut said:

Common sense tells me that in order for a co-op to arise it's going to have to compete in the marketplace. The only way to do that without gigantic marketing effort which no-one will have the money to support will be by undercutting everyone else, on medium to longer term contract. The throngs of beeks hanging out to sell their several season's worth of stock will all be in like Flynn. Then a few years down the track when these longer term sale contracts start looking less appealing, are the rank and file kiwi beek members of the co-op going to buckle down and honour their co-op contracts or will they chase the higher dollars outside ? Just like last time.

Someone will tell me how wrong I am.

 

Yeah nah .....  you is right and wrong .

 

The first misconception is that it can't be done. You need to be as cunning as the old rat that lives up in the Long Drop.

The second misconception is that  money is needed for everything.  Don't get me wrong, it sure is helpfull .... but shoestring budgets are like an intense  fire ..... they burn the slag and give you pure gold.

Edited by jamesc
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1 hour ago, jamesc said:

 

Whether you continue or not depends on how much grit you've got. How much stamina and passion and fire in yer belly to suck it in  

 

This is true...but ... when you have a mortgage, living bills , overdraft chewed out, kids to school/ feed , sleepless nights after nights  and no funding there must come a point where that grit turns into gravel then into rocks that pull you under. 

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2 minutes ago, Stoney said:

This is true...but ... when you have a mortgage, living bills , overdraft chewed out, kids to school/ feed , sleepless nights after nights  and no funding there must come a point where that grit turns into gravel then into rocks that pull you under. 

You been looking into my soul Mr Stoney ... I don't know what the answer is ..... but if you have a passion for something, and a dream  ..... you regroup, look at your options ..... take a deep breathe and jump back in with a big smile and hope like hell you meet some nice people. 

 

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