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Careers In Horticulture Looks Bright For Northlanders

A local horticulture expo and ‘speed meet’ attracted more than 200 people from across Northland and the North Island last Wednesday.

Held at the Cornerstone Church in Kerikeri, the speed meet matched jobseekers with Northland growers needing workers for the season, training providers and career advisors.

Bruce Campbell, a Director on the Horticulture New Zealand board, says in the current environment, industry led events like this are critical for growers, and for those looking for immediate employment or to build a new career for themselves.

“Preparing a highly skilled workforce to support our growth plans isn’t going to happen overnight or without a lot of support and it’s been fantastic to have the support of different agencies as we cater for the demand.”

The T&G Fresh Blueberry harvest is underway and the fresh produce company is looking into innovative ways to attract workers to help with the harvest and post-harvest over the coming months.

“We’re working closely with the Ministry of Social Development and coming up with innovative solutions to help people entering the industry,” says T&G Fresh Regional Manager – Kerikeri, Tom Chamberlain. “We’ve also launched our biggest recruitment drive yet – FRESHWORX 20/21 – which aims to attract students to help ‘drop the crop’ and have fun while working on the orchards this summer. Taking part in the recent Expo, along with our FRESHWORX Open Day, has enabled us to showcase the variety of exciting jobs available with us.”

The Ministry of Social Development has been actively supporting and partnering with growers and training providers to meet the workforce demand within the industry.

Ministry of Social Development Regional Commissioner and Regional Public Service Lead, Eru Lyndon says that our people are stepping up and recognising the potential this industry holds.

“Horticulture is a key sector for the Northland economy and is going to be vital in Northland’s post COVID recovery. So, it’s important we identify the opportunities and collaborate to support businesses and our communities,” he says.

“Our partnership with Harvest Northland Tokotoko Solutions is testament to the type of ‘out-of-the box’ thinking needed to create a capable workforce for this vital sector.

Looking further ahead, partnering with growers to provide effective workforce solutions will also help create sustainable career pathways for hardworking Northlanders.”

For more information about the horticulture recruitment available speak to your local Work and Income Work Broker or visit the GoHort NZ website.

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