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CEO Message – 29 May 2020
Discussion with producers in the past week has provided a chance to reflect on the COVID-19 hurdles we’ve been busily navigating in recent months.
The APL team has played key roles throughout the pandemic, including many instrumental efforts behind the scenes, all of which have confirmed the importance of industry-wide collaboration in the face of supply chain emergencies.
In simple terms the disruption to our markets left us with 10,000 processed pigs a week which needed to be urgently redirected. APL listened to producers big and small, as well as post-farm gate business, and has helped find nuanced, collaborative solutions while respecting commercially sensitive information and relationships.
The initial resumption of air-freight exports, with the sort of responsiveness which drew the envy of other commodities, and now sea-freight volumes has been the result of a combined industry effort, with tireless efforts from exporters and the APL trade team.
Similarly, our work to promote the uptake of Australian pork in smallgoods production will not only help offset surplus domestic supplies, it also strikes a timely chord with Australian consumers whose preference for supporting Australian farmers has been galvanised by COVID-19.
APL was proactive in initiating discussions with food charities which has secured the subsidised supply of surplus pork to the needy. And we’ve pursued left-field options like supplying zoos and animal sanctuaries which have been devastated by COVID-19 closures. All these opportunities have been worth pursuing and, in several instances, will likely develop into ongoing market relationships, both domestically and overseas.
I’m proud of the extraordinary effort of the APL team members in their front-foot approaches to the challenges our members have faced. Producers can be assured that we’ll continue our proactive approach on behalf of the industry in the coming months.
It’s exciting to see our partners in the foodservice industry re-open their doors and gradually welcome back customers. We’ll continue to support them as they resurrect their businesses and resume their extraordinary role in promoting Australian pork to diners. Simple signs, like the sight of suckling pigs in Asian restaurants in the next few weeks, will be testament to our recovery progress.
Together, we are leading our industry through these extraordinary times and, as a result, we are well placed to strengthen our position in the post-COVID-19 marketplace.
– Margo Andrae, APL CEO
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Australian Pork Limited
The producer owned organisation supporting and promoting the Australian pork industry. Australian Pork Limited (APL) is caring for the future of Australian pork.