Australian apple growers have had their calls for a more effective marketing programme heard, with a panel being set-up to develop a new long-term strategy.
Peak body Apple & Pear Australia (APAL) and Hort Innovation are working together to form the panel, which will be made up of industry and subject matter experts.
Along with developing and overseeing the implementation of the marketing strategy, the panel will also be tasked with building stronger relationships between production, retail (both domestic and export) and consumer.
“The principle objectives of the panel are to grow domestic consumption, build alternative and sustainable markets and improve grower returns,” said APAL chief executive Philip Turnbull.
Hort Innovation and APAL are now working to finalise terms of reference and profile the qualifications, skills and experience required for panel selection. “Getting this right will be fundamental to the success of this new approach,” Turnbull added.
The move comes after APAL presented an alternative marketing strategy and structure during its October (2018) stakeholder meeting. At the request of industry, APAL then approached Hort Innovation about the prospect of developing a more effective marketing programme. Over a series of meetings, the pair agreed that the development of an impactful, long-term strategy was crucial to the industry’s sustainability and profitability.
Speaking on behalf of its grower-members, APAL requested the current marketing plan (funded by grower levies) not be implemented until a revised strategy can be developed and agreed. Hort Innovation advised there where longer-term commitments that needed to be honoured, however, uncommitted investment will be kept to a minimum.