NZ Apples and Pears Inc (NZAPI) has appointed John Allen as a director to its board. Allen replaces Karen Morrish, who resigned from the NZAPI board in August. He will serve as a director for the remaining term of Morrish’s tenure, which ends in August 2022, and will be eligible for re-election to the board at that time.
Allen joins directors Peter Landon-Lane, Cameron Taylor, Jackie van der Voort, Lesley Wilson, Catherine Wedd and Evan Heywood on the board, along with independent director and board chair, Richard Punter.
Allen has spent the past five years working in brand development and export sales at Mr Apple. He said in recent decades it has been exciting to watch New Zealand Inc move away from a commodity-led sales approach to a focus on showing customers the importance of quality and the story behind the product.
“My key focus has been obtaining an in-depth understanding of specific markets, including consumer behavior, and how global events impact the demand and value of NZ apples in each market. With an increasing cost structure across the industry, our ability to differentiate ourselves from our competitors has never been more important. That said, market access remains key as ultimately this will open the door of opportunity.”
Prior to working in the pipfruit sector, Allen spent 15 years in corporate and agribusiness banking and governance roles in New Zealand and Australia, working with businesses exporting horticulture, dairy, meat, plant and machinery goods.
Punter said the commercial experience Allen will bring to the organization will be incredibly valuable. “His understanding of our industry’s global market will strengthen the New Zealand apple and pear industry’s connection with all stakeholders. Additionally, his governance experience will help industry partners work together and help maintain NZAPI’s accountability to our members from a commercial perspective.”