It’s with great pleasure that Summerfruit NZ and Plant & Food Research announce the signing of a Master Licence agreement for the commercialisation of five Nzsummer apricot selections from within the joint SNZ-Plant & Food Research breeding programme. The official signing took place this week with the Plant & Food Research Plant Varieties team at their Hawke’s Bay Research Centre.
The Master Licence agreement is between Plant & Food Research and NZ Summer Fresh, the summerfruit industry-led cooperative. Sub licensed commercial growers will be eligible to become NZ Summer Fresh shareholders under the NZ Summer Fresh constitution.
The apricot varieties included in the Master Licence are the first to complete the evaluation programme carried out over the last few years by the Plant & Food Research breeding and research team in Clyde. These varieties having undergone commercial grower trials are now ready for commercialisation.
With the Master Licence agreement now in place, it’s the beginning of a significant work programme for NZ Summer Fresh to complete within extremely tight timeframes.
Current Nzsummer trialists will receive further information from NZ Summer Fresh shortly regarding key activities required for the establishment of NZ Summer Fresh. These will include;
- Issuing of grower sub licences, which must occur within 3 months.
- Issuing of shares to shareholders.
- Registering NZ Summer Fresh as a cooperative.
- Setting an AGM date, with a provisional target date of early July.
- Calling for nominations from within the NZ Summer Fresh shareholders for grower directors.
Also NZ Summer Fresh will be setting up a working group to begin work on the Commercial Development Strategy which needs to be completed and agreed with Plant & Food Research before any further commercialisation of these specific apricot selections can take place.
The Summerfruit NZ board would like to acknowledge and thank the growers and others who volunteered their time and expertise over the last three years as members of the Apricot Co Interim Board. Their patience and determination to work through the various options for a feasible and economically viable industry led cooperative was essential in reaching this conclusion.
NZ Summer Fresh and Nzsummer trialists thank the Summerfruit NZ board, staff, and Plant & Food Research for their considerable support in this challenging process. Particularly for Summerfruit NZ working through the complexity and detail in the establishment of NZ Summer Fresh.
The New Zealand summerfruit industry and Plant & Food Research look forward to an exciting and successful future for both the new entity and the five new apricot varieties.
Agreement signed by Roger Brownlie, director of NZ Summer Fresh and Emma Brown, Plant & Food Research’s General Manager, Plant Varieties.
Wider negotiation and development teams:
Barbara Waddell, (Plant & Food Research - Business Manager), Andrea Crawford (Summerfruit NZ - Business Manager), Kate Hellstrom (Summerfruit NZ - CEO), Roger Brownlie (Summerfruit NZ - Chair & NZ Summer Fresh - Director), Emma Brown (Plant & Food Research - General Manager Plant Varieties), Nate Parker (Plant & Food Research - Business Development Manager) and Yoko Yoshikawa (Plant & Food Research - Research Associate Tree Crops).