Tuesday, 17 November 2020 08:55

Hort keen to work

Written by 
President of Horticulture New Zealand Barry O'Neil says he is keen to work with the government in the post-Covid recovery. President of Horticulture New Zealand Barry O'Neil says he is keen to work with the government in the post-Covid recovery.

Horticulture New Zealand says it is keen to work with the government in the post-Covid recovery.

“We’re keen to continue to work constructively with Minister Damien O’Conner, including in his new role as Trade and Export Growth Economic Minister,” says HortNZ president, Barry O’Neil.

The grower organisation says it also wants to ensure the horticulture industry is enabled to grow, while at the same time responding to its environmental and climate change obligations.

“In 2019, the New Zealand horticulture industry was worth more $6.39 billion and has grown by 64% in the past ten years. That is thanks to industry innovation and grower investment in new varieties and growing techniques to stay ahead of international competition and respond to consumer preferences.

“This growth is also because the industry is a sustainable user of land.”

O’Neil says while the future is promising, the horticulture industry’s most pressing issue is right now is finding enough seasonal labour for the coming harvest.

“We estimate that even with a significant uplift in the numbers of New Zealanders being employed, we will still have a shortfall of approximately 10,000 people.

“That is why we want to see the border opened now so people from Covid-free Pacific nations can come and work the harvest, as they have done for the past 13 years under the Recognised Seasonal Employer (RSE) scheme.”

O’Neil says other horticulture industry challenges include water storage, biosecurity protection and ensuring that vegetable growing can continue in New Zealand.

More like this

The results are in - now what?

OPINION: Now voters have had their say, the incoming Government has some important decisions to make about farming in New Zealand.

The minister of zoom

Trade Minister Damien O'Connor says he and other trade ministers around the world will need to get used to developing relationships via Zoom.

Late RSE extensions welcomed

Horticulture NZ says it welcomed increased Government support and flexibility for the Recognised Seasonal Employer (RSE) workers who are still in New Zealand waiting for repatriation back to the Pacific.

Featured

 

New investment in spirulina production

The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) Sustainable Food & Fibres Futures Fund will invest in a project to assess the viability of larger scale production of spirulina in New Zealand.

National

Machinery & Products

Weeds in for a shock

WIith an increasing focus on reducing chemical herbicides, largely because of crop resistance and a potential build-up of residues, new…

V8 - a baler with a grunt

Following three years of testing with clients worldwide, Ireland-based manufacturer McHale has added a bigger model to its range of…

Virtual CV valuable tool

With a 12-year history of recruiting specialised operators from overseas to service the agricultural contracting industry, Hanzon Jobs typically brings…

» The RNG Weather Report

» Latest Print Issues Online

The Hound

Tough gig!

OPINION: This old mutt has a fair amount of sympathy for Ag Minister Damien O’Connor with the two associate ministers…

Cow killer

OPINION: The Hound was not surprised to hear well-known end-of-the-world doom-merchant ‘Dr’ Mike Joy is still as joyless as ever…

» Connect with Rural News

» eNewsletter

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter