Producer Organisation (PO) seminar held by British Growers

by Tim Mudge

The UK has thirty three registered PO’s and all were invited to a recent event hosted by British Growers. Jack Ward opened the event and chaired the Q&A sessions. PO’s offer growers the potential to share resources and access funding from the EU Fruit & Vegetable Regime to help develop their businesses and strengthen the position of growers within the supply chain.

Two key PO’s gave presentations to the event. Fruition, the largest top fruit PO in the country and G’s Growers a multinational PO with members in the UK and Spain. Robert Hinge from Fruition gave details on the background and formation of the group and how it was structured to offer benefits to members. Peter Sargeant of G’s Growers focused on the challenges of working across two EU member states and utilising the PO’s assets across them.

Peter Cusick of Roythornes and Ben Wilkinson from Chavereys spoke on the legal issues that PO’s have faced in the past and how accounting practices vary across PO’s.

The Q&A/discussion session focused on the administration of the scheme, seasonal workers, the impact of the National Living Wage and some thoughts on the potential implications of the EU referendum. The event was sponsored by Roythornes and Chavereys.