Parliament has removed the open entry and exit provisions of the Dairy Industry Restructuring Amendment Bill (DIRA).
Coming at the end of the first stage of the review, the report summarises the key themes in the feedback, collected from over 1400 Fonterra shareholders and sharemilkers via an online survey.
The summarised feedback, which includes over 2600 comments, offers a wide range of views, says Steering Group chair James Buwalda.
Many are dissatisfied with the council’s perceived performance and effectiveness. Various suggestions for improvement were made, while some proposed disestablishing the council altogether.
“We are very pleased with the amount of feedback we have received so far,” Buwalda says. “The survey feedback will inform the next steps in the review, which include further analysis of key issues and options for addressing these.”
Face-to-face consultation with farmers on these possible options was originally scheduled for this month but had to be deferred due to restrictions on travel and gatherings.
With too little time to plan and undertake a thorough consultation before the busy calving season began on farm, the consultation meetings are now being planned for mid-September to early October.
The final report, which will present the Steering Group’s recommendations, is expected to be completed before the end of November.
“The Steering Group is very disappointed that the Covid-19 situation between March and June disrupted this review,” says Buwalda.
“However Fonterra farmers want to know that they have been heard and their feedback has been given the appropriate consideration. We are committed to a robust process, to ensure integrity in our analysis and recommendations.”