The pipfruit industry has a new industry IT body, PIITSA (Produce Industry Information Technology Standards Association).
PIITSA aims to preserve the co-ordination of systems that prevailed while pipfruit marketing body Enza had a government-mandated monopoly on marketing, says Enza CIO Adam Hunt.
"When Enza had that statutory authority, we were in a position to enforce standards across the industry. With deregulation, we can't do that any more, so PIITSA is about handing those standards over to an industry body and not losing [the industry's] competitive advantage."
The pipfruit industry was deregulated in October and since then players in the industry such as Turners and Growers and software developers like Universal Software have worked on the PIITSA draft charter, Hunt says.
PIITSA will work to ensure industry players are using the same product code and have consistent EDI file formats. "For example, if a ship is being loaded from a warehouse, there's an EDI standard for the transfer of information."
Enza uses homegrown software where possible, Hunt says. "We're an SAP environment but our fruit-specific systems are built in Jade, and for us and the other players in the pipfruit supply chain 90% is New Zealand-developed."
PIITSA membership is open to all industry organisations and the intention is to keep membership free, with participants paying their way to meetings, Hunt says.
Monthly meetings are planned.