From your AF CEO

24.01.24

January begins the calendar year and the end of our AF financial year. 2023 was tough, but we emerge leaner and stronger and ready for 2024.  It’s natural to feel nervous as elections loom, inflation continues, and output prices stagnate. But looking ahead in 2024, we stand squarely beside our Members, recognising the challenges you face and committed to giving you the prices, advice and service you need. 

The supply chain is under real pressure but we’re not a supplier, we’re your co-operative.  We’re not motivated by margins, bonuses, and dividends; we run the co-operative on a margin of just of over 1%, and we don’t pay bonuses.  Our success is your prosperity: we’re an extension of your business, your outsourced procurement team. 

We’re not complacent and although research reveals nearly 80% of AF Members are satisfied with the services we provide, we are constantly looking for ways to improve.  We’ve recruited talented people to negotiate better prices across all input categories.  We’ve invested in our systems to save money and make us easier to work with and we’ve launched a ground-breaking collaboration (www.apa.coop) with two other buying groups to deploy the influence of over 6,000 farmers to secure even better value.

We’re not insulated from disruption. Many of us at AF HQ are involved directly in farming or come from farming families and the winds of change blowing through the rural economy have a direct impact on everyone here. But in times of uncertainty people turn to the people they trust, and as your independent, Member-owned co-operative, we’re here to cut through the smoke and mirrors and take care of your procurement so that you can get on with running your business, knowing that we’re on your side.


Best wishes for 2024.

 

David Horton-Fawkes AF CEO

execoffice@af.farm 01603 881 881

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