Grain Producers Australia (GPA) is one step closer with the release of the draft constitution for wide industry consultation this week.
GPA spokesman, Pete Mailler, said, "The GPA Steering Committee has released the constitution on the GPA website, gpau.com.au. We encourage everyone to download and evaluate the document and provide any feedback by the 10th of June. This is the penultimate step in establishing GPA and rebuilding grower influence in the industry."
GPA has been developed as the output of two grains industry roundtables which were run by Grains Council of Australia (GCA) in October 2009 and February 2010. The GCA initiated the roundtables because it has been crippled by a fractured membership and severely limited in its financial capacity for several years. This has meant that representation of grain growers has been severely compromised at the national level and there was no realistic way to change this while maintaining the existing GCA membership and funding model.
GPA proponents met with State Farming Organisations (SFOs) in Adelaide last week to discuss the progress of finding a successor to GCA. The meeting was positive and progress was made in determining a way forward for growers and the process is ongoing.
GPA is proposed as a national grain producer advocate, populated directly by growers. GPA will be funded by voluntary membership subscriptions. GPA will facilitate policy development for the industry through an external committee structure, which will incorporate existing industry groups including SFOs. SAFF, VFF and AgForce grains groups have endorsed GPA.
Mr Mailler said, "The GPA business model is designed to provide a stable platform for grower representation at the national level. The fundamental principle is to deliver real and measurable outcomes to the industry and demonstrate value in advocacy at all levels of the industry."
"GPA is deliberately aiming high because any structure aiming to deliver the minimum will surely fail."
"The Australian grains industry has a farm gate value in excess of $8 billion; it deserves a well resourced and effective advocate. We are committed to the establishment of GPA and re-engaging growers directly in the future of their industry."
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