Process Vegetables NZ 2024 Annual General Meeting (AGM) and speaker sessions

Thursday, 1 August 2024, speaker sessions from 6pm, AGM commences at 7pm - Dunsandel Community Centre, 1456 Tramway Road, Dunsandel.

Speaker sessions

  • Networking (drinks and nibbles provided)
  • Talley’s grower update - Simon Abel
  • Wattie’s update - Greg Noller | Nigel Rowe-Lucas
  • Research updates

Annual General Meeting - business

  1. Welcome and introductions
  2. Apologies, proxies, meeting procedures
  3. Confirmation of 2023 AGM draft minutes   
  4. Matters arising
  5. Chairman’s report                                     
  6. Approve audited financial statements for year ended 31 March 2024
  7. Approve 2024/25 budget
  8. 2024 remits
  9. Confirm director elections
  10. General business
  11. Matters arising from the AGM




Out of the boardroom and into the field for Process Vegetables meeting

The Process Vegetables New Zealand product group held a board meeting with a difference in March, with a field and factory tour around Hawke’s Bay.

Process Vegetables NZ (PVNZ) business manager Matt Thorn took the wheel of a minibus as a group of 16 growers from around the country, together with processor representatives, got to see fellow growers’ farms, tour the McCain Foods factory in Hastings and visit Tasman Harvesting in Hastings.

“Our mission was to get members out in the field rather than sitting round a board table,” says Matt. “It was really good to see growers from all around the country together, in the field, talking and sharing their ideas on crop rotations, nutrient management and getting better production.

“We also had processor representatives from Heinz Wattie’s McCain Foods and Talley’s Foods along. The growers were really interested to see the farms in different locations, the various farming systems in different areas, get to look around a processing plant and learn more about the harvesting machinery.”

As a product group affiliated to Horticulture New Zealand (HortNZ), PVNZ is funded by a commodity levy and represents 350 commercial process vegetable growers on crop related issues. 

Its members grow mainly carrots, sweet corn, peas, beans and beetroot. 

A substantial part of the PVNZ budget is in research for process vegetables, including A Lighter Touch Programme, the major Sustainable Food & Fibres Futures collaboration of 15 product groups.

“We also provided an update about the work we are doing on process vegetables growers’ behalf, including the A Lighter Touch programme,” says Matt.

It includes a major extension programme focused on the implementation of agroecological crop protection through the development of specific extension tools, model farms and focus groups to ensure grower uptake of new crop protection practices and integration into everyday practice.

“Among of the major aspects of the programme for us are the trials being undertaken in Canterbury around biological sprays for peas and beans,” says Matt. “So, we talked about that work. Some chemicals are expected to be phased out, so there is a need for the industry to find ‘soft biologicals’ that can be used in the sector - that is very important for our members.”

The farm tours included a visit to grower Hugh Ritchie at the 2050-hectare Drumpeel Farm at Ōtāne to see the progress that has been made after the property was severely damaged when the Waipawa River broke its banks during Cyclone Gabrielle.

“We saw the huge amount of work that has gone into moving soil around, contouring, the new drainage and fencing that has been installed and Hugh’s crops, which were looking fantastic,” says Matt.

The final stop was at Tasman Harvesting where the group learned about the machines the company uses to harvest peas and beans throughout the Hawke’s Bay and Manawatu for McCain’s Hastings factory.

It operates a modern fleet of six Ploeger Pea Harvesters and three John Deer tractors with high lift trailers for the peas harvest and two Ploeger Bean Harvesters for the bean harvest in February and March.

“People really enjoyed getting into a shed with one of the huge pea harvesting machines, that can literally operate 24/7 for three months. We managed to pack a lot into the day and cover a lot of topics.”