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Kiwifruit Harvest Taster Day: Registrations Open

An initiative giving people an insight into working in the kiwifruit industry over harvest is about to kick off.

The initiative – led by New Zealand Kiwifruit Growers Inc. (NZKGI) and funded by the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) – sets its sights on encouraging jobseekers to take up employment in the kiwifruit industry by providing a free harvest taster day for New Zealand citizens and permanent residents. It follows NZKGI’s successful winter pruning and summer-work taster programmes in 2020.

NZKGI Education Co-ordinator Di Holloway says the kiwifruit industry needs a workforce of more than 23,000 people from March to July.

“The initiative provides a great opportunity for New Zealanders to try something new, to find the right fit and receive assistance in finding a job that suits them,” says Ms Holloway. “This opportunity may be of interest to those who have had reduced hours or even lost their jobs due to COVID-19, or those seeking a career change.”

Work is available outdoors on kiwifruit orchards and indoors in packhouses, and the taster day covers both. The first part of the day is in a classroom, followed by some time out in an orchard and in a packing facility. Lunch is provided.

“We hope that a large proportion of the people who experience the harvest taster day will be pleasantly surprised by the variety of different jobs on offer,” says Ms Holloway. “There are positions for everyone – if you are physically fit and enjoy the outdoors, orchard work might be for you. If you prefer being indoors, the packhouses are the place to be”.

MPI Director of Investment, Skills and Performance, Cheyne Gillooly says this initiative is a great way for people to get a taste of working in the kiwifruit industry. “Working in the kiwifruit industry can be hugely rewarding,” says Mr Gillooly. “We see enormous value in these types of initiatives in both introducing job-seekers to careers that they might not have considered or might have considered and want to learn more. “It’s a really exciting time to get into a job in the food and fibres sector and there are a range of opportunities on offer, many of which are available on the Opportunity Grows Here website. Our food and fibres sector continues to play a huge role in New Zealand’s recovery from COVID-19.”

2021 Harvest Taster Course dates are as follows:

8 March – Te Puke

9 March – Te Puke

15 March – Te Puke

16 March – Te Puke

Further dates and locations will be announced as they become available.

Please register to attend a taster day here: or call NZKGI on 0800 232 505.

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