080110ef02cnewsKatikati farmer and avocado and kiwifruit grower Hugh Moore will be heading to Government House on April 10 to pick up his Queen’s Service Medal for services to horticulture.

A prominent figure in the industry since the 1970’s, this latest accolade adds to the Bledisloe Cup award he received in 2008, and recognises his past and current efforts on behalf of growers including executive roles with NZ Kiwifruit Growers Incorporated, the Avocado Growers Association, Katikati Fruitgrowers Association, and the Horticultural Export Authority.

In addition, Hugh’s own business, Morris Moore Farms includes four orchards producing more than 150,000 trays of kiwifruit and 10,000 trays of avocados a year, as well as a packhouse operation.

With all this under his belt, he knows as much, if not more, than anyone about the challenges of producing, marketing and exporting fresh produce, and the importance of New Zealand’s clean, green environmental image to the overall health of the industry.

Maintaining and promoting that image has been significantly aided by the advent of the Agrecovery rural recycling programme, he says.

Hugh began using the Container programme as soon as it became available in the Bay of Plenty, and says with such a large operation the volume of plastic agrichemical containers builds up very quickly.

‘We had been waiting a long time for a programme like Agrecovery, and it’s great that the industry and manufacturers have got together to make it happen – there’s no excuse for not using it.’

It takes a bit of effort, Hugh says, but now that Agrecovery has greatly expanded and extended the hours of its collection sites around the country it’s much easier.

‘It’s really simple for us here as our nearest collection site is now at Fruitfed in Katikati and we can take the containers with us whenever we go there.

‘At the end of the day we live and die on our international marketing image and it’s a logical step to make use of a programme like this to show we are ticking all the boxes and practicing what we preach. Best of all it’s free.’

As for his new title, Hugh says it’s something he didn’t expect to receive but with tongue in cheek admits it might come in handy.

‘I’m not going to put QSM behind my name all the time, but on occasion it might be useful when I want to kick butt!’

Fruitfed on Marshall Rd in Katikati accept empty, triple rinsed containers from participating brand owners Monday to Friday 9am – 12pm.