Covid-19: A message from Innes

Covid-19: A message from Innes

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

We face a once-in-a-generation challenge in addressing the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and the associated dislocation of the global economy.

The spread of the disease from Asia to Europe, North America and New Zealand and the closure of food service and hospitality establishments is causing our export marketers significant issues. The programmes we have in place to promote venison to the restaurant sector in the United States and Europe are taking a significant hit.

We produce high quality, valued and safe food. Consumers still need our products, but for now few of them are able to consume them in restaurants and cafes.

Our marketers are now working with their market partners on the logistics and timing of shipments. Some orders are being deferred until there is more certainty about how their food service and retail customers are coping with this unprecedented event. Further impeding the normal flow of business is disruption to shipping routes, a drop in air-freight capacity and issues with the availability of containers and space on wharves.

Nevertheless our export marketers have deep and diverse relationships with importers across a range of markets and they are examining all the options they have for reaching consumers: e-commerce, home delivery and processed goods options are being explored. They are also placing a heavier emphasis on existing retail options.

While global financial markets are taking time to find their new levels, the New Zealand dollar has fallen 17 per cent against the US dollar and Euro since the beginning of the year. This is acting as a buffer to some of the impact of weaker prices in foreign markets. 

For processors, keeping staff safe is a priority, both because of their duty of care as employers and to ensure they maintain continuity of processing. They have each put measures in place to minimise the risk of introducing Covid-19 into their workplaces, and will be asking for suppliers and service providers to abide by these.

DINZ has taken the decision to suspend all events and DINZ-organised meetings. We have not taken this decision lightly. We know that some of the networks we have helped create are important for your connection and motivation. We encourage you to reach out to members of your networks to continue to share news, views and support, and encourage you to use some of the networking technology which is freely available on-line.

This is clearly not business as usual.

Stay strong, stay connected and follow the Ministry of Health’s advice on the measures you should take to protect your family’s health and that of your staff and friends. If you need more information on the market situation or anything else related to your deer farming business, don’t hesitate to email or phone the DINZ team. We are open for business and we will continue to support your work and our industry to the best of our ability.

 

Very best regards,

Innes Moffat
Chief Executive
Deer Industry NZ