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Commodity Levies (Apples and Pears) Order 2024

The New Zealand government has imposed a commodity levy on commercial apple and pear growers, payable to New Zealand Apples and Pears Incorporated (NZAPI) to fund the support and services it provides as the industry body.

A commodity levy, once imposed by a commodity levy order, must be renewed every six years.  The current Commodity Levies (Apples and Pears) Order 2018 (Levy Order) expires on 16 January 2025.  Consequently, NZAPI is seeking support for the continued imposition of a levy during 2024. 

The Strategic Review undertaken in 2023 formed a basis for consultation and engagement with growers. The review process continues in early March with consultation with growers and other persons likely to be affected by the payment or collection of the levy (such as collection agents) through in-person regional meetings, webinars, newsletters, website updates, and public notices. 

In April, a referendum will be held for potential levy payers (principally our current growers) to vote on the Commodity Levy Order. This will be followed by a formal application in May from NZAPI to the Ministry of Primary Industries (MPI) requesting renewal of the Levy Order.

While the Levy Order is a very important piece of legislation for the industry, more importantly it is what brings us together as an industry, formalising how we work together, and how NZAPI provides services and support to growers. Because of this, it is critically important that you, the grower, are part of the renewal process.

Consultation

NZAPI are holding grower meetings in early March to discuss the outcomes of the recent Strategic Review, and how these impact the spending of commodity levy funds.  Proposed changes to the Commodity Levy Order will be discussed, and your feedback will provide input into the final application to MPI. Your involvement in the renewal process is critical and we look forward to seeing you at the upcoming meetings.  Hort NZ representatives will also attend the meetings to discuss their Commodity Levy Order renewal and answer any questions. 

Please join us for this discussion. Light refreshments will be available.

  • GISBORNE: Monday 11 March, 5-6pm, Bushmere Arms.
  • HAWKE’S BAY: Tuesday 12 March, 5-6.30pm, No. 5 Café & Larder, Hastings
  • HAWKE’S BAY: Wednesday 13 March, 5-6.30pm, Havelock North Function Centre
  • NELSON: Monday 18 March, 5-6pm, Moutere Hills Community Centre, Upper Moutere
  • NELSON: Tuesday 19 March, 5-6pm, Headingly Centre, 2 Headingly Lane, Richmond
  • CENTRAL OTAGO: Wednesday 20 March, 5-6pm, 103 The Store, Roxburgh
  • TIMARU: Thursday 21 March, 5-6pm, Grosvenor Hotel, 26 Cains Terrace, Timaru
  • ONLINE MEETING: Monday 25 March, 12-1pm

REGISTER HERE to attend any of the grower meetings.

Growers’ views on how NZAPI should represent and advocate at an industry level are important. Every opinion counts. 
Any grower wanting to provide feedback can do so by
:

  • Talking to NZAPI staff or a board member at a grower event.
  • Submitting written comments via the feedback form
  • Calling NZAPI on 06 873 7080 
  • Emailing NZAPI at info@applesandpears.nz 
  • Commenting directly in writing to the Minister for Agriculture, Parliament Buildings, Wellington.

Why is there a compulsory levy?

In 1990, the government introduced the Commodity Levies Act (Act) to provide a legal basis for the imposition of a levy payable to primary industry groups to fund primary industry activities.  This is because it was recognised there is a need, and a cost, for the support and services the industry requires to function and grow in New Zealand and to engage and export around the world.

The Commodity Levies (Apples and Pears) Order made under the Act imposed a levy on apples and pears, payable to NZAPI as the industry body for pipfruit.

Today, more than thirty years on, our Levy Order continues to be the foundation of what we, as an industry body, do for our industry. The levy is how growers fund NZAPI to invest and grow the industry, while providing growers with day-to-day services required for their operations, many of which would be otherwise inaccessible for individual growers.

Who has to pay the levy?

The person who will be primarily responsible for the payment of the levy is the apple and pear grower. An apple and pear grower is the person who is, at the relevant time, the occupier of land used for growing trees for the production of apples and pears from which there was harvested at least 1,000 kilograms of apples and pears during the levy year ending on the previous 31st day of October.

No apple and pear grower will be exempted from paying.

What is the levy used for?

The levy is primarily used by NZAPI to support and deliver services to growers. NZAPI, or any subsidiary of NZAPI, may spend levy money for the following purposes relating to apples, pears, or growers:

  • Market access and crop protection: Maintain, manage, improve, and grow market access and crop protection opportunities for industry.
  • Biosecurity: Manage, prepare for, and protect industry from biosecurity risks.
  • Advocacy and communications: Advocate for and represent the views of the industry to all stakeholders. To ensure effective communications to the membership and stakeholders.
  • Extension: Provide services to the membership that provide benefits to the industry via technical transfer.
  • Business management services: Ensure the smooth running of the organisation and governance structures to support the industry and meet the requirements of any associated Acts and legislation.
  • Governance: Govern and ensure the membership is well informed and resourced by services provided by NZAPI.
  • Research and development: Establish and run, or support the establishment and running of, research and development programmes that support and advance market access opportunities, crop protection, and product development.
  • Project management: Ensure effective management of projects (in-house and external) as part of the overall service package of NZAPI.
  • Workforce: Work collaboratively with growers, other industry participants, research institutions, and government agencies to provide education and training to the membership, developing people within the industry and attracting new people in. Maintaining viable access to labour mobility schemes nationally and internationally.
  • Environment: Work collaboratively with growers, other industry participants, research institutions, and government agencies to understand sustainable resource use and minimising the environmental impact of the industry.

This list has been updated to align with the Strategic Review outcomes and priorities, and will be added to the Proposed Amendments to the Commodity Levies (Apples and Pears) Order.

To view the Purposes for which levy money may be spent in the current Commodity Levies (Apples and Pears) Order, click here. (pdf)

How much is the levy?

The commodity levy order sets both the role of NZAPI as the levy collector and sets the maximum levy amount. The levy is reconfirmed yearly at the NZAPI AGM. In 2023, the levy was reduced by vote to 1.15 cents per kilogram.

How and when do growers vote?

All levy paying growers who are therefore members of NZAPI can vote in the Commodity Levy Order referendum which will be held between Monday 8 April and Friday 3 May, 2024. There will be both online and postal voting options.

The voting will be managed independently by Electionz (as Returning Officer) who will send instructions to all growers (to the individual listed in the Financials - Voting communications field in your grower registration). Please ensure this information is up to date in your NZAPI grower registration.

Proposed Amendments to the Commodity Levies (Apples and Pears) Order


NZAPI is proposing two changes to the Commodity Levy Order:

  1. Additional levy payable if levy not paid in time can be charged at NZAPI’s discretion.
    The current levy order makes the payment of an additional levy mandatory. NZAPI’s preference is to have the discretion as to whether to require an additional levy to be paid where a levy is not paid on time.
  2. The Purposes for which levy money may be spent have been updated to align with NZAPI’s new strategic plan. 
    To view the current 'Purposes for which levy money may be spent', along with the proposed update, click here.

 

 

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