Background to the RMPP programme
RMPP tackled a wide range of red meat sector issues and opportunities identified by the 2011 Red Meat Sector Strategy. The programme aimed to help bridge the gap between average and high performing farmers. It was developed from research and farm pilots, and through input from farmers, rural professionals, and the meat industry.
The RMPP was a 7.5-year PGP programme between:
- the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI)
- Alliance Group
- ANZ Bank
- Beef + Lamb New Zealand (B+LNZ)
- Blue Sky Meats
- Greenlea Premier Meats
- Progressive Meats
- Silver Fern Farms.
The RMPP’s work was delivered in 5 workstreams:
- extension and adoption
- people and capability
- resources and tools
- provenance and assurance
- supply and procurement.
Outcomes and benefits of RMPP evaluated
As part of its monitoring process for PGP programmes, MPI commissioned an independent evaluation of the RMPP programme. This looked at:
- outcomes and benefits
- programme execution
- any learnings.
Download the RMPP evaluation report [PDF, 202 KB]
What the evaluation found
The overall finding was that the RMPP programme provided a useful forum for tackling and resolving common challenges facing the red meat industry and had some notable successes. Projected net economic benefits from RMPP were assessed to be up to $438 million. While the programme’s initial focus was on economic benefits, it became evident that making improvements to farmer wellbeing, the environment, animal welfare, biosecurity, and ensuring social licence to farm were equally important to farmers.
The programme's major achievements and benefits include:
- establishing and demonstrating the value of facilitated farmer-led "Action Groups" – groups of farmers working together to meet on-farm management challenges such as productivity, profitability and environmental improvement
- developing e-learning modules hosted on the B+LNZ website, with good, consistent uptake from users
- developing the New Zealand Farm Assurance Programme (NZFAP) and the country-of-origin brand "Taste Pure Nature" to back up attributes of origin, traceability, food safety, and animal welfare in meat products to support meat company marketing
- developing New Zealand Farm Assurance Plus (NZFAP Plus), a further voluntary standard which covers water, soils, climate, biodiversity, and people management standards
- developing the Triple O (Optimising Operator Ownership) initiative, where RMPP funded extra pilots of a programme aimed at improving the function and productivity of meat processing plants and MPI’s food safety verification services.
The lessons learnt include the importance of:
- adequate planning and formation time for complex, multiparty programmes
- clear communication, planning, and commitment between parties when handing a programme over to a successor entity
- being clear from the start about what practice change is being targeted and who should make the changes
- keeping government, industry, and community leaders informed when considering and designing practice change programmes
- using a large and experienced global IT firm for major IT projects
- engaging with influential Māori from the start when building programme concepts and designs
- designing the framework for monitoring and evaluation at the outset to agree on the attributes that need to be monitored and the timing of these measures.