Marquis Group welcomes new grower shareholders

Marquis Macadamias Australia is in the process of welcoming a further 90 Grower Shareholders to its company, representing 5,000 tonnes of future nut in shell (NIS) supply.

Marquis Group Chief Executive Officer Larry McHugh said inviting new grower shareholders into the company ensures Marquis growers remain a driving force for the industry.

“The more growers who are invested in the company, the better Marquis will be able to represent them and make decisions which improve the macadamia industry for growers,” he said.

“The Marquis Group is 100% grower owned, and by becoming a Marquis shareholder, growers can have a say in the direction of our company by voting on important decisions.

“In addition to securing additional NIS, Marquis Macadamias Australia has plans to expand its Bundaberg processing facility to ensure growers in this fast-growing region are well catered for. 

“With the global macadamia crop set to double over the next four or five years, this expansion is part of our plan to ensure consistency in quality and reliability of supply for our customers each season. 

“Securing more crop for Marquis allows us to continue to develop and secure new markets, as we have done since 1983, and to service ongoing demand in mature markets, such as the USA, Europe and Japan.

“By doing so, Marquis is assuring future business partners and customers that we have enough macadamias to meet their needs,” Mr McHugh said.

Macadamia grower David Grellman, whose macadamia farm is located at Alstonville in northern New South Wales, is one of the new Australian shareholders.

The former cotton, wheat and beef producer from Wee Waa purchased the farm with his wife Sharon in September 2020, and last month delivered their first harvest to the Marquis processing factory in Lismore.

Mr Grellman said they liked the idea of becoming a shareholder in a company that supported growers both locally and internationally.

“Marquis has been very welcoming and supportive; they are vested in our success as growers locallywhether it be with education courses, providing information or coming out to the farm to answer our questions,” he said.

“The company is always looking for improvements, either producing new products or developing new markets, to ensure strong returns for growers and the sustainable long-term future of the macadamia industry.”

The share issue to Australian growers follows Marquis Macadamias Africa securing a new grower shareholder United Macadamias in 2020, bringing the total number of grower shareholders for the Marquis Group to 276 globally.

Marquis Macadamias Africa Director Roelof van Rooyen, said the partnership with United Macadamias would bring continued local and international growth and market stability.

“United Macadamias is made up of seven family shareholders, all of whom are second generation farmers, who have farmed macadamias for the past 22 years,” he said.

“The group currently has macadamias orchards of varying ages on farms located on the South Coast of Kwa Zulu Natal, South Africa.”

United Macadamias Director Luke Dunstone, said becoming a Marquis shareholder was “a massive opportunity to align ourselves with fellow Industry leaders.”

“Not only do we have a similar vision with regard to the South African industry, we have joined a processing and marketing brand that will create sustainability and improve market growth.

“It was imperative that we aligned ourselves with a company with local and international diversity and one that could handle responsibly the influx of product coming onto the market in the long term.

“This partnership will also bridge the gap between different farming regions and will create a good platform to further improve our own on-farm practices,” Mr Dunstone said.

Mr van Rooyen said outside of grower shareholders, Marquis Macadamias Africa has partnerships with growers across South Africa, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Malawi and Swaziland.

“Macadamias remain a fairly new and niche market in Africa. However, the industry has seen rapid growth in hectares of orchards,” he said.

 “These partnerships are critical to securing and maintaining a consistent supply of product for our customers.”

The Marquis Group processes 22,000 tonnes of NIS per annum through Marquis Macadamias Australia, representing 43% of the Australian industry, and 10,000 tonnes per annum through Marquis Macadamias Africa.

Marquis is ramping up processing capacity to a combined 96,000 tonnes by 2030 and is investing more than AU$40 million into new production capacity and pasteurisation technology across both regions.

                   David Grellman, one of the new Marquis Macadamias shareholders

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