The APIQ Panel

About The APIQ_® Panel

The APIQ_® Panel’s role is to make decisions regarding producer and auditor issues of non-compliance to APIQ_® Policy and Standards and the integrity of APIQ_® as a recognised program of high quality that adds value to producers.

The Panel gives producers, auditors and APIQ_® Management (APIQM) a place to go when they have concerns about audit outcomes, certification, APIQ_® policies and other APIQ_® related issues of concern. The Panel does this by directing an appeals, incident investigation and review process with administrative support provided by APIQM. The Panel’s decisions are final and independent of APIQM.

The Panel:

  • Routinely reviews the program, standards and policies and recommends improvements for industry consideration.
  • Determines courses of action where incidences of misconduct, non-performances of duty or conflicts of interest are alleged, or where other unidentified events of a critical nature occur.
  • Makes decisions on incidences and situations that are outside the scope of APIQM and when decisions need to be at arm’s length to APIQM.

The Panel consists of 5 or 6 specialists:

  • An intensive livestock veterinarian;
  • An independent specialist auditor (preferably with an intensive farming background);
  • One or two independent producers (but not an APL producer elected Board Director);
  • A representative nominated by the APL Board, who serves as Chair; AND
  • An individual from the supply chain (e.g. a customer representative).

Panel members serve a 3 or 2 year term with options for continued service where they are available and invited by the APL Board.   When a vacancy opens, APIQM, under the direction of the APL Board calls for applications from across industry to fill the specific role vacated.  Applications and resumes are received, interviews conducted and a suitable candidate nominated by a selection committee to the APL Board for approval.

Panel Members

Panel Chair - Mrs Sharon Starick

Sharon is a mixed farmer, including pigs, from South Australia.  Sharon has been the Panel Chair since October 2013, but served as a producer representative since the establishment of the Panel in 2010.  Sharon serves rural industry in several capacities including as a Board Member of Animal Health Australia and as the Chair of the Rural Business Support Organisation in South Australia.

Intensive Livestock Veterinarian - Dr Eric Thornton

Eric is a Victorian based veterinarian, viticulturist and livestock producer with many years’ experience in intensive agriculture. Eric also has many years’ experience in the processing sector. Eric has served on the Panel since its establishment in 2010.

Independent Specialist Auditor - Mrs Helen Fletcher

Helen has worked as a quality systems manager and consultant for several organisations, including pig producers.  Helen has managed internal audit processes for ISO, APIQ, HACCP, SQF and Yum.  She has covered several industries including piggeries, eggs, feed mills, poultry and egg processing.   Helen has served on the Panel since 2010.

Pig Producer - Mr Jeremy Whitby

Jeremy Whitby is an owner in Queensland National Pork Holdings (QNPH), a multi site pork production operation. Jeremy believes Quality Assurance programs are an essential tool in managing production systems  and that they will become more important in the future.  Jeremy has served on the Panel since 2013.

Pig Producer - Mr Tim Kingma

Tim is a Victorian pig producer who owns and manages a 1,400 sow Farrow to Finish operation on two sites. Tim overseas and implements the business Quality Assurance program. Tim is passionate about the pig industry and is involved in the industry at a State and National level. Tim currently serves as chair of the Victorian Pig Producers Association and has served on the Panel since 2013.

Supply Chain Specialist - Mr Dale Pemberton

Dale joined the Panel in January 2018.  Dale is the National Livestock Manager for Coles Supermarket.  Dale’s role includes managing Coles livestock procurement for the Coles lamb and pork species.  Dale has been involved in the livestock supply chain for over 30 years.  Dale’s appointment continues to demonstrate Coles commitment to the pig industry and the APIQ_ Program.