Flower Market Circular – 20 July 2021

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In this week’s edition of the Flower Market Circular:

– Do your part – follow COVID rules
– Last chance to complete industry survey
– New customer portal trial begins

Current COVID restrictions
The Melbourne Market is currently operating under stage 4 restrictions.

We all need to help ensure the Melbourne Market remains open
The most important thing you can do to protect your business and livelihood is to wear your face mask at all times and wear it properly.
From what we’ve learnt from the government, and based on the number of positive cases coming through each day, the delta strain is highly transmissible, passing from person to person with only fleeting contact. 
Do not assume the Melbourne Market is unique; should an infected individual enter the market, significant business interruption would follow anywhere from 24 hours to 14 days during the testing and isolation period. 
In the event of person-to-person COVID transmission in the market, there is a real risk that the DHHS may close the market to avoid a widespread outbreak.

Wearing your face mask is not just about following a rule; it’s about doing everything we can as a market community, working together to keep businesses operating, and keeping us all safe and healthy.

Eating and drinking
Obviously, your face mask must be removed when consuming food and drink, but it should be done responsibly. For example, market users walking through the market carrying a coffee cup without wearing a face mask puts themself and others at risk of COVID transmission. 

Change to COVID penalties
In response to the heightened risk the current COVID outbreak poses to market businesses and safety, the MMA is increasing the severity of penalties for non-compliance for mask-wearing and social distancing as of Tuesday 20 July, 10pm.
1st offence – official warning recorded on users file
2nd offence – 24-hour suspension
3rd offence – 14-day suspension
On Monday morning, several official warnings were recorded on market users’ files, and six 24-hour suspensions were issued.  

Please do your bit for the market and wear your face mask correctly, and call out those who are not doing the right thing – don’t risk your business; we’re all in this together.

Exposure sites
We ask that every market user regularly check the Victorian exposure site list. The online list is sorted by most recently added, and can be found at www.coronavirus.vic.gov.au/exposure-sites. Save the link in your phone and make a habit of checking it before you leave for the market each morning. If you have attended an exposure site, you must strictly follow the DHHS directions. 

Remember, Do not attend the Melbourne Market if you are feeling unwell. If you are experiencing COVID symptoms, get tested and isolate until you receive a negative result.

Flower Market Research Project – Have your say!
External professional services firm Sapere has been engaged by the Melbourne Market Authority (MMA) to research the current and evolving needs of the tenants and buyers at the Melbourne Wholesale Flower Market.

To help us enhance the flower market’s offering, we want to hear from a broad range of growers, wholesalers, regular buyers, and even buyers who only purchase flowers at the market from time to time. All information provided will be beneficial, and we welcome honest feedback and opinions.

Any responses or information you provide in the below survey will be treated as commercially confidential to Sapere. The results will only be reported to the MMA in aggregate, meaning no data or information will be attributable to a specific organisation or individual.

This is your last opportunity to complete the survey!
Click Here To Begin Survey

If you have any questions about the content of this survey or need assistance completing this survey, please contact David Graham on 0407 505 320 or via email at dgraham@thinkSapere.com. The survey is expected to take around 10-15 minutes to complete and can be accessed by clicking below.

New Customer Portal trial begins
Over the past 18 months, the MMA has been working on a series of digital transformation projects.

The first step was implementing a single integrated customer relationship management (CRM) system, which resulted in streamlined invoices on a single consolidated statement with payment into one bank account. 

With the foundation CRM works now completed, our next step is to roll out a customer portal, providing market users with a digital platform to view their account details and interactions with the MMA.

Last month, several market businesses signed up to trial the new ‘My MMA Portal’. This first group of 12 businesses are trialling the system for a period of three months, providing the MMA with valuable feedback, and allowing us to iron out any kinks in the system before it is rolled out to all market businesses. 

Phase one of ‘My MMA Portal’ will contain:
Business Account Information – View your business contact details to ensure they are accurate.
Statements & Payments – View your account balances, recent tax invoices/statements, with the ability to lodge payments online.
Access & Permits – View all account access cards in use by the business, with the ability to deactivate access cards.
Repairs, Infringements, and Incidents – List of all repairs, infringements and incidents allocated to the business.
This section will provide the ability to lodge support or maintenance requests via the portal. 

This is just the first phase of our portal rollout. We intend to add more features to the portal over time, such as the glycol portal, parking allocations, forklift registrations, and applying for access cards.
To find out more information, or to volunteer your business to take part in the My MMA Portal trial, contact Amanda Flannery at aflannery@melbournemarket.com.au 

Zero Tolerance on Drugs and Alcohol 
The health and safety of market users is our number one priority. That is why working under the influence of alcohol or prohibited drugs is not permitted at the Melbourne Market. Individuals or businesses who are found consuming or supplying alcohol on-site risk severe penalties, including having lease or licence terminated for businesses, or lengthy suspensions and possible bans for individuals. 

To learn more about the MMA’s policy on drug and alcohol use, visit melbournemarket.com.au/rules-and-safety

City of Whittlesea Administrators visit Melbourne Market
Last week the MMA welcomed the Executive Team from the City of Whittlesea, including the recently appointed CEO, Craig Lloyd to tour the Market. 
The team visited the flower market, trading floor, Buyer’s Walk and viewed the progress of the canopy construction before finishing up for a light breakfast at Moon Bean cafe. 
The visit allowed council administrators to see the inner workings of the Market, an icon of the municipality, and learn about our achievements and challenges. 
Most of the guests on the tour had never visited the market previously, and all walked away suitably impressed by the work ethic of the market community and the scale of operations. 
Visits like these strengthen our ties with key stakeholders and help identify potential future business opportunities to bring value to market users.


Increase to waste to landfill charges
The Victorian Government has imposed an increase on Municipal Industrial Landfill Levy, which came into effect on July 1. 
The purpose of the levy increase is to ‘provide additional and ongoing funding to support efforts by government, industry and the community to reduce waste’.  
To reflect these industry changes and rising costs, market cleaning contractor IKON increased the charge for general waste disposal at the market recycling transfer station, as per the table below, as of Wednesday 14 July. 

The good news is, with a 98% recycling rate, market tenants are already doing a great job of sorting and disposing of their waste at little cost, so most businesses will see no significant impact.
For market businesses that separate waste at the point of generation into recyclables, there continues to be no charge incurred.


Ask the MMA
If you’ve got a question or suggestion for the MMA email it to submissions@melbournemarket.com.au.
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