Marks & Spencer visit AgResearch about improving supply chain through science
L to R: Marks & Spencers' Malcolm Copland (Meat, Poultry and Dairy Manager), Steve McLean (Agriculture Manager), Sue Bell (Technical Executive) and AgResearch's Dr Jimmy Suttie (General Manager Applied Biotechnologies Group), during the visit to AgResearch's Ruakura Campus.
United Kingdom retailer Marks & Spencer (M&S) brought a delegation to meet New Zealand producers and processors who supply lamb to their business. The visit, organised by M&S, involved meeting relevant supply and processing partners.
As part of the week-long New Zealand tour, AgResearch hosted the M&S delegation and its local partners on 9 February at its Ruakura campus in Hamilton. The presentation focussed on science that can contribute to the world class supply chain that M&S has developed.
Representatives from Silver Fern Farms, Alliance Group and Beef + Lamb New Zealand attended to discuss how science can support the farm, processing, transport processors and New Zealand farmers.
M&S Agriculture Manager, Steve McLean, says the visit was to work with suppliers to make production more sustainable through utilising best practice, reproductive technologies and animal welfare and farm systems to improve quality and build trust in New Zealand lamb. “British consumers value New Zealand lamb and we want to see how we can build on this reputation and continue to improve quality through all aspects of supply.”
Dr Jimmy Suttie, AgResearch General Manager, Applied Biotechnologies, described the M&S initiative as significant, “Marks & Spencer is a major partner with the New Zealand lamb industry, and the collaborative supply chain that gets our lamb to British consumers is incredibly important to our farmers. The challenge we met to discuss is how to use science to make the journey from New Zealand farms to the retailer more efficient, sustainable and innovative.”
Particularly important was the presence at the meeting of Beef + Lamb New Zealand who contributes to most of the science research discussed using farmer levies.
The session covered animal genomics and reproductive technologies, agricultural
systems modelling, meat science, food processing, food safety and animal welfare.