Fully operational packhouses and social distancing aren't exactly easy bedfellows. But ripening kiwifruit couldn't wait for the Covid-19 pandemic to be over, and packhouses had to keep working through alert levels 4 and 3. And they have had to make huge changes to be able to do that.
Trevelyan's managing director James Trevelyan says the packhouse on No 1 Rd was almost totally reconfigured in a very short time as New Zealand moved between alert levels. ''The team's done a fantastic job of reconfiguring the site so, for instance, the smoke room used to take 200 people, now it only takes 40.''
The temperature of everyone coming on-site is taken, all the washing systems and flow of people have changed and shifts have been staggered. ''It's all very organised, where they wash their hands and dry their hands, there is a one directional flow,'' he says.
''People don't cross each other's paths, we've punched a hole through the side of the packhouse and made another way out so we only have people coming in one door and people going out in totally separate areas so there's this big loop road going on.''
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