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New Agricultural Marketing Society welcomed by Minister 14 March 2008

On the 19th February 2008 the Minister welcomed six new members to the Agricultural Marketing Society, which he views as one of the most important and influential organisations supporting Manx Agriculture.

The new members are, Heather Smallwood, Ian England, Ian Davies, Frank Rush, Derek Kermeen and Richard Lole. The new team consists of a wide range of experience, knowledge and skills.

Agriculture Minister Phil Gawne MHK said: ‘The new Society is significantly changed from its predecessor in particular in two fundamental areas. Firstly, I see the organisation as a strategic leader for all areas of the Manx agricultural and food industry, a “think tank” which will provide direction for the local food chain.

‘The second fundamental role I see for the organisation is that of a partner of the Department, overseeing the operation of the two Associations, a kind of “OfAg” who ensures the associations are trading responsibly and equitably under their significant powers introduced under the Marketing Act.’

These two core aspects of its role require the Society to work closely with the Associations, so as to sensitively balance the needs of the food chain and the Manx consumer. The society will act in a steering role rather than that of a regulator or controller, though there should be no illusions of the significant amount of power which the team commands.

In conclusion the Minister said: ‘I am grateful to the new Society for taking up this challenge and passionately believe that by working together, the Department, the Associations, Society and the industry can look forward to a great future.’

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