New Zealand Kiwifruit Growers Inc (NZKGI) celebrated its 25th anniversary as an incorporated society at a special gathering in Tauranga last week.
The evening recognised NZKGI's central role as an advocate for growers of New Zealand's kiwifruit industry.
The event was attended by Minister of Agriculture Hon Damien O'Connor as well as a wide range of industry leaders including present and past NZKGI forum members.
Both founding chairman Hendrik Pieters and current chairman Doug Brown spoke at the event about the challenges and successes of the industry over the last 25 years, including the crisis of the Psa outbreak, as well as grower solidarity around the single desk and Kiwifruit Industry Strategy Project.
"It is an honour to chair NZKGI not only through its 25th anniversary, but also at a time when the kiwifruit industry is booming," said Brown.
"During this time of growth, NZKGI's role has never been so important in areas such as labour, water and the right to grow as we pave a path for the industry to meet forecast volumes. Being a primary industry, you also don't know what's coming around the corner, so NZKGI will be needed for many more years to come to advocate for New Zealand's kiwifruit growers."
The event also launched NZKGI's book Seeds of Success: The Stories of New Zealand's Kiwifruit Pioneers which is a collection of the stories of the innovation and personalities behind some of the industry's founding members.
NZKGI contracted award-winning journalist Elaine Fisher, who spent almost a year creating this unique work.
NZKGI also thanks the book's sponsors through whom the book was able to come to fruition.
Of particular mention is Platinum sponsor Zespri and Gold sponsors Fresh Carriers/Oceanic Navigation as well as the NZKGI Forum.