Announced at a networking event in London today (16 May), Beef + Lamb New Zealand unveiled Meat Business Women – New Zealand.
Beef + Lamb New Zealand general manager Ashley Hall explained the New Zealand version of the group.
“Working at Beef + Lamb New Zealand for seven years, I’ve been extremely lucky in the support I’ve been given each step of the way. Notwithstanding that, it’s pretty apparent that, as a woman, I’m definitely in the minority. I’m hugely passionate about the meat industry, as are my female colleagues and it’s a really exciting (although sometimes challenging) sector to work in. What I love about Meat Business Women is it really promotes the industry as a valid and rewarding career option for women.
“We’ve witnessed the success of Meat Business Women in the UK and what it has done for the growth of female talent within the meat industry. That achievement is something they should be really proud of and which we want to replicate here in New Zealand. The establishment of Meat Business Women – New Zealand will be announced at an industry conference, the Retail Meat New Zealand Butchers’ Summit on 17 May in Dunedin. An official launch will follow soon and we’re aiming for the first event to take place in November. We’ll be working with Laura Ryan and her team on this event to best replicate the formula that has been working so well over in the UK.
“Over time, I hope that there’ll be more opportunity for women working in the meat industry to collaborate on an international basis, potentially by way of mentorship programmes or face-to-face global networking events.”
The UK version of Meat Business Women was founded three years ago in an effort to help make the image, culture and landscape of the meat industry more attractive to female talent, skilfully improve networking and nurture new female entrants into the sector.
Laura Ryan, founder of Meat Business Women, said: “It’s fantastic to see the group go from strength to strength on an international scale. So many of the challenges and opportunities within the sector span the globe and getting the best possible talent pipeline is definitely one of them.
“Having an international reach will allow global mentoring opportunities and the sharing of best practice. Research shows us that having more gender-diverse company boards and workforce facilitates enhanced financial performance and governance. As someone who is passionate about the meat industry, I know we can make a positive impact with Meat Business Women.”