MIA Focus: The heat is on meat at RMSC 2019

Andy Macfarlane RMSC 2018
There were plenty of questions from the RMSC floor last year, this one from ANZCO board member Andy MacFarlane. Photo B+LNZ Ltd.

The heat is on meat around the globe from societal perceptions of the sector, alternative proteins, nutrition and environmental matters, as well as key international trade developments and changes in supply chains or pathways to markets.

Organisers of this year’s Red Meat Sector Conference (RMSC), the ninth in the series, are lining up an array of speakers to look out and forward at what’s coming and to inform and inspire the sector’s leaders for the coming years.

Organised jointly by the Meat Industry Association and Beef + Lamb NZ Ltd, RMSC is the red meat sector’s annual forum and is expected to bring together around 300 delegates from throughout the industry to Christchurch on 28-29 July. They will learn about topical matters from 10 inspiring speakers over four sessions: consumer trends; trade; the political policy context; and reflections. They will also be able to network with colleagues and discuss current challenges for their businesses.

Three international speakers have been confirmed, to date, who will look at consumer trends and trade in some of New Zealand’s top meat markets.

  • US politics and the current US approach to trade will be explained by Jim Richards, a Washington DC-based government relations specialist and director of Cornerstone Government Affairs.
  • Untangling the latest in the UK’s negotiations to leave the EU from his first-hand perspective, will be London-based Jeff Grant, the red meat sector’s Brexit representative.
  • E-commerce and, more specifically, the future for the trade of fresh meat through it, is the topic of a presentation from a representative from China’s Alibaba Group.

Other speakers include Kirk Hope of Business NZ, who will talk about policy changes affecting the productive sector, and Simon Upton Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment, while NZME’s head of business Fran O’Sullivan will facilitate the final ‘Reflections’ session.

A Hamburg-Sud Cocktail Party will welcome delegates on the Sunday evening. They will continue networking with colleagues over the morning and afternoon tea breaks and lunch on Monday and later at the Maersk Lines Gala Dinner, at which the Minister of Agriculture, Hon Damien O’Connor, will speak. Both major sponsors are long-standing supporters of the RMSC initiative since its inception in 2010.

RMSC 2019 will be accompanied by the usual wide array of trade stands from sponsoring companies. In addition to Maersk Lines – which recently launched a new virtual assistant for exporters called ‘Captain Peter’ – and Hamburg-Sud, other major sponsors this year include AgResearch, Russell McVeagh, QCONZ and OSPRI. Other supporters are: Deta Consulting, Aus-Meat Ltd, AsureQuality, Napier Port, Hally Labels and Beef + Lamb NZ Inc.

RMSC 2019 will take place at Rydges Latimer Square Hotel, Christchurch from 28-29 July. For more information about the conference, programme, speakers and registration see www.redmeatsector.co.nz.

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