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What an adventure 2021 turned out to be!
Determined to break free from the COVID context that took hold of the world from 2020, we decided to focus on winning from the inside out.
We had a big year planned and we knew we needed to foster our internal culture, values, people and processes to give ourselves multiple ways of overcoming barriers to create value for our customers.
We collectively had to step outside our comfort zones and, as we end 2021 and look ahead to a "fruitful" 2022, I couldn't be prouder of our RADteam and what we have achieved this year.
Migrating most of the Kiwifruit industry to our new coolstore application presented a huge challenge and whilst we didn't always get everything right, we did our part by managing a significant change management programme, whilst supporting the industry to supply Zespri ships to market in another record volume year.
We onboarded a record number of new customers this year across our Grow / Pack / Sell suite. Most of these customers were onboarded without us having stepped foot on their farm, pack house or office across NZ, Australia and the USA. In a pre COVID world this would be thought of as too hard to do.
By pushing ourselves to work and collaborate in different ways with our customers we have achieved what we would have previously thought of as impossible. And, whilst we can't wait to travel again and be onsite in our second habitat, it has certainly given us the confidence to take on challenges and overcome what we need to do to get the job done.
Working with New Zealand Trade and Enterprise has also been a highlight of 2021. By really committing, and "doubling down" in this partnership, we have successfully created and executed a detailed business plan to start our entry into the North American market in earnest. We have some key team members now relocated in the US, we have researched our customer market and "sounded out" regional nuances, we have re-imagined and re-invigorated our website and digital presence, and we are ready to rock the new year with our first marketing campaign.
In a world where fresh produce demand is burgeoning, more and more constraints are placed on producers, ranging from scarcity of labour, to climate volatility, to increasing demands for traceability and compliance, the game has rapidly changed. Where once we were satisfied with our ability to support the inventory transactions from soil to supermarket, we now chase a transformative goal of helping our customers reduce loss in the supply chain and optimise the taste experience for the consumer in that "moment of truth".
To all our friends, customers and partners, thank you for your support over 2021 and we look forward to working with you in 2022.
Happy festive season to you and your families.