Twitter Sure Focuses The Mind

Zespri Stand at Fruit Logistica Berlin 2011

I sympathise with Turners & Growers.  I truly do.  Here they are, the quintessential New Zealand produce marketer, which in the 1960s probably did more than any other company at the time to turn kiwifruit into the commercial boon the fruit  is  for New Zealand today. But can they sell kiwifruit today?  Nope! Why not? Because of a set of  Parliamentary Regulations which ensure single desk status for what used to be the grower owned marketing company – Zespri.  Well, in a roundabout way anyway.  It is actually a little more complicated than that but I don’t want to open that can of worms right now.

Here is what I wrote on Twitter just now: 

Why do householder surveys on kiwifruit regulation? Zespri is the ultimate scale model, the NZ industry can’t afford not to have it. Period.  

Exactly 140 characters by the way, but I am digressing. I am a free marketer from way back, which is not surprising given my supermarket background; but I mean every letter of that Twitter message.  Turners & Growers have waged quite an effective PR campaign on their opposition to the single desk  model for kiwifruit and some of their arguments do actually make sense.  At the end of the day though, the horticultural industry simply cannot afford to jettison the only scale model it has in order to satisfy free market principles. Sorry guys, but no can do.

Write a comment