As New Zealand’s industry attempts to fill a 23,000 worker short fall, kiwifruit pickers and packers can expect to earn at least a living wage of $22.10 during this year's harvest. New Zealand Kiwifruit Growers chief executive Nikki Johnson stated there had been pressure on the industry’s pay rates for a while, but orchards and most pack houses would pay the living wage.
The harvest was gearing up to start and would run through until June. It was expected to produce even more than last year’s record of 157 million trays of green and gold fruit. Of course, travel restrictions due to Covid-19 meant there were more Kiwi workers needed than usual, as there were less seasonal workers from the Pacific Islands and backpackers this year due to the closed border.
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