Mushroom Growers join British Growers crop association family

by Jack Ward

The following press release has been issued by British Growers and the HDC

HDC and British Growers to work together for Mushrooms

In a bid to better focus levy spending for mushroom research and knowledge transfer activities, the Horticultural Development Company (HDC) has announced changes to how it will liaise with Mushroom growers going forward.


From October the administration and management of meetings, previously undertaken by HDC, will transfer over to the British Growers, marking the formal end of the HDC Mushroom Panel. Mushroom growers will continue to be represented within HDC’s panel system, with two elected members, Jude Wilson (Monaghan Mushrooms) and Jim Rothwell (Little Hall Farm Mushrooms) sitting on HDC’s Protected Edibles Panel for an interim period.


In making these changes, HDC aims to:
• Enable all growers the opportunity to discuss the technical needs of the industry via a new Mushroom Growers’ Group managed by British Growers
• Bring Mushrooms in line with all other HDC crop Panels;
• Address the difficulty encountered with maintaining Mushroom Panel membership given the small pool of growers and the governance practices HDC panels follow;
• Release HDC staff from panel secretarial duties to enable focus on technical issues.

HDC’s Director, Bill Parker said, “These changes are to ensure HDC continues to make the most out of the levy we collect to deliver research activities that help move the industry forward. We will remain fully engaged with the mushroom industry through representatives on our Protected Edibles Panel, and we anticipate being closely involved with the new Mushroom Growers’ Group and hope to develop a productive relationship with its members.”


Jack Ward, Chief Executive of the BGA, said “The Mushroom Growers’ Group is a very welcome addition to the range of organisations within the British Growers Association. The group will benefit from British Growers expertise and the decision to join us further consolidates our position as a major force in horticulture and fresh produce.”


Membership of the new British Growers led Mushroom Growers’ Group will be open to all mushroom producers. If you would like more information about the group, please contact Jack Ward at British Growers: Jack.Ward@britishgrowers.org - tel. 01507 602427.
For more information on HDC visit www.hdc.org.uk
Ends

Notes to Editors:
If you would like more information on this release please contact Charlotte Corner, HDC Communications Manager: charlotte.corner@hdc.ahdb.org.uk on 024 76478880

• The Horticultural Development Company (HDC) is a division of the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) which administers the collection of an ‘industry levy’ to fund essential near-market research and development. The research programme and knowledge transfer activities are strategically aligned to the needs of the industry by working closely with growers, consultants, scientists and funding bodies.

• The HDC’s work is funded through an industry levy which is channelled directly into research and development projects that serve the interests of over 300 crops through seven sector panels: Protected Edibles; Field Vegetables; Mushrooms; Soft Fruit; Hardy Nursery Stock; Tree Fruit, and Protected Ornamentals and Bulbs

• The HDC has responsibility for over 300 crops in the horticultural industry and commissioned over 75 research and development projects in 2012.

• The Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) is an independent, evidence-based 'Levy Board' which plays a pivotal role in improving farm business efficiency and competitiveness. The AHDB is wholly funded by farmers and growers through statutory levies. Because the levy is statutory AHDB is classified as a non-departmental public body.

• British Growers Association: British Growers Association represents & promotes UK growers of horticultural crops, in particular Vegetables & Salads. It provides representation, leadership, coordination, expertise and support services for British growers, their marketing organisations and specialist crop associations.

It maintains key relationships with Government departments, working alongside complementary industry representative and research bodies.

For further information contact Jack Ward CEO British Growers Association jack,ward@britishgrowers.org. Tel 07799 757778