Tuesday, 26 May 2020 11:28

Fonterra review attracts 1400 submissions

Written by  Sudesh Kissun
James Buwalda. James Buwalda.

A steering group reviewing the Fonterra Shareholders Council has received over 1400 responses from farmers and sharemilkers.

Submissions to its survey closed on May 19. Feedback will be now reviewed by the nine-member steering group.

Group chairman James Buwalda says the group got feedback from “across the spectrum”.

“As the survey has only just closed, I haven’t had a chance to review the feedback received yet,” he told Dairy News last week.

“But I am pleased with the responses overall and the time taken by farmers to provide their feedback.

“We got feedback from shareholders and sharemilkers, across all regions, from different sized farms, as well as people who have been supplying Fonterra for different lengths of time.”

The review of the 25-member elected council follows concerns raised by some shareholders at last year’s Fonterra annual meeting.

Some shareholders want the council scrapped, suggesting they could have a leaner organisation monitoring the co-operative’s performance on behalf of its 10,000 shareholders. The council costs about $3m a year to run.

The steering group has shareholders representatives, two Fonterra directors and two councillors. It hopes to deliver a final report to shareholders in August.

Buwalda says the group will now review all the feedback in detail. Analysing the scores people gave for the questions posed by the group and the written comments people have provided.  

“We expect to be able to highlight the issues people are most concerned about and to build a deep understanding of why they hold these concerns,” he says.

“Following that analysis, we will identify possible options or changes before going back to farmers to get their feedback on the issues, options and possible changes that can be made.”

The steering group has been meeting via video conference due to Covid-19 restrictions.

Buwalda says this has worked well so far.

“The review process must have integrity and strong farmer engagement. 

“We are constantly looking at how best to carry out this review in light of the constraints imposed by the Covid-19 restrictions.”

More like this

Is he the right Guy for Fonterra?

Former Primary Industries Minister and Fonterra board aspirant Nathan Guy believes his relationships with bureaucrats in Wellington will help the co-op’s farmers immensely.

Fonterra back in the black

Fonterra chief executive Miles Hurrell says 2019/20 was a good year for the co-op, with profit up, debt down and a strong milk price.


Longest running ag field days all go

The South Island Agricultural Field Days, held in Kirwee on the outskirts of Christchurch, will celebrate its 70th year in March 2021 with a bigger demonstration area.


New Feds man keen to build

New Feds board member, William Beetham wants the organisation recognised for its significant contributions to NZ farming and society as a whole.


Global movers and shakers

Dairy companies around the world are facing a dilemma – whether to expand or divest assets, says Rabobank’s Mary Ledman.

Live cattle exports in limbo

The fate of 28,000 cows in quarantine in New Zealand and supposedly destined for China in the coming weeks hangs…

Machinery & Products

Mowers get a makeover

Well known throughout New Zealand over the past 18 years, Pottinger has redesigned its rear-mounted Novadisc mowers to incorporate a…

Hardy spotlight

High quality, reliable lighting is essential for anyone involved in agriculture or the great outdoors.

Simmm twin water blasters

Italian made Simmm Power Cleaner 100/11 and Power Gun 100/11 single-phase (230 volt) electric water blasters are proving popular in…

OPD argument raging on

A stoush is brewing with the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI) heavily criticising Farmsafe Australia’s recent Safer Farm Report.

» Latest Print Issues Online

Milking It

Cows and earthquakes

OPINION: It has long been suggested that animals have senses that humans don’t, and often behave differently than usual shortly…

Battle is on

OPINION: One of Australia’s biggest dairy businesses is back on the market after the Federal Government knocked back a bid…

» Connect with Dairy News

» eNewsletter

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter