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HortNZ welcomes labour crisis relief

2 August 2021

Horticulture New Zealand welcomes the Government’s announcement permitting Recognised Seasonal Employer (RSE) workers from Samoa, Tonga and Vanuatu, to enter New Zealand without the need for managed isolation.

The decision will provide both economic relief to the Pacific Islands and alleviate the pressure felt by New Zealand’s horticulture and wine industries who face extreme seasonal labour crises for harvest and pruning.

HortNZ chief executive, Nadine Tunley, says without the support of this seasonal Pacific workforce, permanent jobs held by Kiwis, and the growth of New Zealand’s horticulture and wine industries, is at risk.

“While Kiwis will continue to be first priority for employment in our horticulture and wine industries, we still require additional help from our seasonal workforce, particularly during such challenging economic times,” says Nadine.

“The horticulture sector would like to acknowledge Minister Faafoi and his Officials for their efforts and working with industry to achieve this positive outcome.”

NZ Apples & Pears, NZ Kiwifruit Growers, Summerfruit NZ, NZ Winegrowers, NZ Ethical Employers and HortNZ are working with Government to finalise details and ensure that the health, safety, and wellbeing of workers remain paramount throughout this transition.

Media release