A $16 million, seven year programme in the deer industry has been described as being a ”game changer” in the production and marketing of venison.
Deer Industry New Zealand (DINZ) and the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) will join in a new Primary Growth Partnership (PGP) programme called Passion2Profit.
MPI will contribute almost $7.4 million to the project, with the balance coming from DINZ and its partners.
The programme would ”open up a world of possibilities” and it aimed to deliver economic benefits of $56 million per year in additional industry revenue by the end of the programme, Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy said.
DINZ chief executive Dan Coup described it as a ”big milestone”, saying a major investment was needed to achieve the market potential of New Zealand’s farm raised venison.
”Only with the support of PGP, will Passion2Profit have the resources to create the step changes we need,” he said.
One of the major challenges was New Zealand’s over reliance on the European market. Demand there was seasonal and not in step with New Zealand’s venison supply.
”There are two clear opportunities in Passion2Profit. The first is branding and positioning lean, tender, farm raised venison as a luxury red meat sold year round in new markets and market segments.