NPA Board agrees new election format

The NPA Board has agreed to introduce a new election format, which will take effect when members elect a new Pig Industry Group (PIG) early next year.

The changes follow the successful amalgamation of the NPA’s Producer and Allied Industry Groups this year in a bid to reduce duplication and concentrate knowledge and expertise.

The new PIG is currently made up of 12 elected producer members (pictured with NPA staff at last year’s NPA 20th anniversary celebrations) and 10 elected allied industry representatives. However,  the addition of NPA staff and other representatives from PVS, BPA, AHDB, Red Tractor and Defra, makes the group is quite large so it needs to be reduced in number to ensure it remains effective, NPA chief executive Zoe Davies said.

The Board has agreed to a number of changes:

  • 10 producer and seven allied industry members will be elected to form the next Pig Industry Group.
  • Five producers will be elected on a geographical basis with one guaranteed seat per region (North, East, Midlands, South Central and South West). The remaining five seats will be ‘free’, determined by the number of votes cast.
  • Six allied industry representatives will be elected on a sectoral basis, with one each from the following sectors: nutrition, pharmaceutical, veterinary, marketing groups, manufacturing and processing. The remaining seat will be ‘free’, awarded to remaining person with the highest number of votes.
  • A broad range of candidates will be encouraged to stand to ensure that we get good representation from all systems, sizes and sectors.
  • Producers will still only be able to vote for producers and allied members for allied candidates.
  • One space has been set aside as a co-opted seat to ensure that we have the flexibility to  plug any gaps in representation.
  • The Young NPA chair will also be given a permanent seat the for the first time.
  • Nominations will be open in October and the voting will take place in January/February 2021.
  • The PIG will meet four times a year and two of the meetings may be held remotely.
  • Not all the original attendees will be invited – some, such as Defra or LIPS, will only be invited to some meetings to discuss specific topics.
  • Amalgamating the two groups has been really successful, combining the breadth of knowledge of allied members with the specific interests of the producers, so this was definitely the right way forward.
  • It will be critical however to retain the geographical and sectoral balance of the group to ensure that it properly represents the interests of our membership.

Dr Davies said: “We want producers and those working in the allied industries to start thinking seriously now about whether they could step up and serve the industry. While the elections might still seem some way off, the time for nominations will soon be upon us!

“Could you be part of this very important group and help shape future policy direction for the pig sector?

“Nominations will open later in the year so watch out for further announcements!”

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Editor of LBM titles Pig World and Farm Business and group editor of Agronomist and Arable Farmer. National Pig Association's webmaster. Previously political editor at Farmers Guardian for many years and also worked Farmers Weekly. Occasional farming media pundit. Brought up on a Leicestershire farm, now work from a shed in the garden in Oxfordshire. Big fan of Leicester City and Leicester Tigers. Occasional cricketer.