A joint research proposal to design a new farm-to-market model for meat, has made it past the first hurdle for getting Government funding.
The project involves the meat processor anxd exporter, Silver Fern Farms, the livestock genetics company, LIC, and PGG Wrightson.
They have applied to the Government's new Primary Growth Partnership scheme for funding and the proposal has made it through the initial assessment to the next stage, requiring a business plan.
Silver Fern and PGW had the concept in mind when they were looking at a merger.
That fell over two years ago when PGW had to withdraw because of funding problems.
However, they say the need to transform the under-performing meat production and marketing process right through the chain, is as great as ever.
Silver Fern chief executive Keith Cooper says the dairy industry provides the sort of model they are looking at.
He says the aim is to have a business plan by mid-year to put to the Primary Growth Partnership advisory panel.