Brett Kelly took up the position as chief executive officer of the Australian Mango Industry Association (AMIA) about nine months ago. He consulted with Queensland growers in Bundaberg and Rockhampton in November. According to Kelly, there were positive signs for this season compared to 2020, with hopes growers will produce more than 8 million trays of mangoes by the end. Kelly intends to increase the focus on the "front end" of the mango supply chain.
The former head of blueberry coop OzGroup said he hoped his commercial background would help drive the mango industry further forward. Kelly described the mango space as an "amazing industry with so much potential". He said he was keen to develop the industry's front end, meaning the retail connections, grower cooperatives and business side.
As the mango harvest is still in full swing, Kelly said growers were still struggling to source enough labor to get crops off despite recent government announcements about labor support and reforms.
He said he acknowledged a lot of people were doing plenty of work to ease the labor issue but agriculture needed to think longer term, adding that he hoped sourcing workers wouldn't be such a problem next year.