Meet the team
Birchwood Grower Nominees
Birchwood Grower Nominees (BGN) Commmittee, are a Limited Liability Company that growers contract with to supply their fruit to Zespri. BGN then negotiates with Birchwood Packhouse for the provision of packing, cooling, inventory management, financial management and other services. The main role of BGN is to ensure the fair distribution of pool funds to growers in a transparent manner.
BGN Committee: Grant Luscombe – Chairman, Mary Coles, Jim Cooper Judy Rapson, Hugh Topp, Steve Shirley, Robert Knyvett, Sonu Singh, Roanne Crone, Mark Nicholson, Hugh Morison, Jane Wordley & Geraldine Jaques.
Board of Directors
Birchwood has a board of 7 directors who provide an impressive combined knowledge of the kiwifruit industry. The board is required to be made up of one independent director, two directors from our investor shareholder DMS and four directors elected from grower shareholders. Mark Tingey is the independent Chairman. Working alongside him are growers, Mark Nicholson, Grant Luscombe and Graeme Pickford, and from DMS Craig Greenlees and Derek Masters
Below are the members that make up our wonderful team
We’re excited to welcome Phillippa into the Birchwood family as our new GM. Her experience many areas of the kiwifruit industry such as quality and compliance, HR and Health and Safety makes her a valuable asset to the team. When she’s not at work, Phillippa adores spending time with her two beautiful granddaughters.
Chief Financial Officer
Karen has an amazing eye for detail, and she needs it to deal with the work load that passes across her desk. She has a huge amount of industry knowledge and is super organized. Her greatest loves are her, and husband Andy’s grandchildren and a good round of golf.
Orchard Techincal Advisor
Aaron sets a high standard with everything he does. He is extremely organised and manages to make doing ten things at once look easy. Aaron is always looking to learn more, and takes every opportunity to expand his kiwifruit knowledge and skills. With a young family Aaron doesn't get much spare time but he always manges to to get in some gardening, fishing, underwater hockey .....
We love Natalie because she is always so happy. She is super organised and keeps us on track with all our food safety compliances and red tape. Nat always has a very practical way of looking at any problem and floats calmly through her day at work.
Linda is the glue that keeps the Packhouse together, without her things would not run as smooth as they do. She is our go to person when we need to “down load”, our helpdesk for all things health and safety along with anything else we can think of. We’re all nice to Linda – she pays the wages.
Michael rules the coolstore and takes care of our inventory. He has dedicated a great chunk of his life to Birchwood and is our longest serving staff member. He knows every nook and cranny, and is always there when anyone needs a helping hand. Just listen for the beep of his forklift and you’ll find him.
Palei has been a welcomed team member to Birchwood and the "Coolstore Crew". He's Michaels right hand man. Don't let his quiet ways fool you. Palei is a man of action, give him a job and it's done before you know it. Being a gym junkie gives Palei more than enough energy to speed through the day.