Beef+Lamb chairperson stands down
Beef + Lamb New Zealand chairman Mike Petersen will stand down from the role in March with Northland farmer James Parsons appointed the chair-elect for a smooth transition.
Parsons, a Northern North Island director for the industry-good organisation, was appointed the role at a board meeting today.
Petersen said he was not seeking re-election as Beef+Lamb's Eastern North Island director, meaning his 10 years on the board - six of which were as chairman would end.
He was stepping down to allow the opportunity for people with fresh ideas to come forward.
''I always had the view that 10 years was long enough and I would have been a director for 10 years for B+LNZ and I think it's very important to have new ideas and thinking and fresh people coming through.''
Petersen took over from Alistair Polson as New Zealand's special agriculture trade envoy earlier this year.
The role is to advocate for New Zealand's agriculture trade interests from a farmers perspective. Petersen said this appointment did not factor in his decision to step down.
Petersen said there had been huge changes in the industry and at B+LNZ in his time on the board.
''I came into the organisation at the time of the end of the Meat Board. If I think of the time I have been involved in over the last 10 years, B+LNZ has gone from effectively a statutory board to an organisation that is now owned and operated by farmers. It's been a massive change.''
The new chair-elect position had been made to allow an orderly transition of leadership.
He said the appointment, unanimously made, allowed the organisation to continue to develop Parsons in the expectation that he would be the next chairman.
''This appointment is a very important part of the governance process. Beef + Lamb New Zealand puts strong emphasis on the development of all directors, and there has been a real focus on growing the leadership ability of the board for the benefit of the wider sector.''
The final decision will be made by the new board at the first meeting after the annual meeting next year.
Parsons will do a great job as new chairman, Petersen said.
''James has the energy and enthusiasm for the role and is fully committed to working for farmers in this key leadership position within the farming sector.''
Parsons said that he was looking forward to the challenge that came with the role and contributing more to the farming sector.
''I'm looking forward to deepening my understanding of the wider industry over the next six months, and getting to know key contacts alongside our current chairman.''
Beef + Lamb works with farmers to provide much of the core research and information they need to achieve greater productivity and help them to make profitable business decisions.
Planning is underway for Parsons to meet key contacts and organisations within and outside the sector, including commercial processing and exporting companies, other organisations and government agencies.
Federated Farmers' meat & fibre chairwoman Jeanette Maxwell congratulated Parsons on his appointment.
Maxwell said he represents a new generation of farmers and he would do well in this position as successor to Petersen.
- © Fairfax NZ News