Southern North Island Beekeeping Group Ltd

The Commodity Levy.

This has attracted considerable debate. We are now half way through the voting process. Hopefully most would have voted: those with 26 hives or more.
We are only one of a few Industry groups that don't have a Commodity Levy.

We did have a Commodity Levy in the 1990's. It started off well and did some marvellous things for marketing monofloral honeys under Bill Floyd's guidance and research work but it gradually morphed into just a fund to support the secretariat of our organisation (the National Beekeepers Association) finally dropping the research and marketing part of the levy.
Once bitten, twice shy.

This Commodity Levy proposal was formulated by ApiNZ without consultation with other beekeeping groups; some of whose members were intimately involved with the establishing the first levy.
ApiNZ's levy format is based on 10 cents per kg (going to 15 cents + GST) at the point of extraction, plus an administration fee of $85 ($100 including GST) for all beekeepers with 26 hives or more.

Consultation meetings were held around the country where it became obvious that it hadn't been well thought out. The vote was delayed and a few things were changed like introducing a minimum quantity before attracting the levy was set at 750Kg.
ApiNZ when formulating the levy introduced feel good factors showing what the levy would fund like paying for biosecurity which should not be part of this levy as this is covered under a Government Industry Agreement (GIA) .

Their publicity showed percentages to where the money would go with 40% going to science and research, (all good stuff) but the rest included some science topics and covered the running of ApiNZ.
Beekeepers were to be advised to update their hive numbers by the end of December 2018 as the second part of the levy is based on hive numbers but this notification only went to ApiNZ members.

When the voting paper came out the percentages to where the levy would be spent had been dropped as had biosecurity.
Most beekeepers are in favour of a levy for research as we are lagging behind in the world, however it encompasses more than this so we are encouraging beekeepers to vote NO.
If the levy is lost we would like all beekeeping groups to get together to formulate a levy purely for research. Each organisation stands or falls on its own membership fees.

Southern North Island Beekeeping Group Ltd