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  1. Richard Curtain
    Richard Curtain February 3, 2014 at 9:18 am

    I enjoyed reading your article on the state of the fruit growing industry and where the current focus on SPC Ardmona fits into the picture.

    One of the key facts that hit me was the much better export performance of the horticulture sector in New Zealand. This suggests we need a study at the micro level about how major exporters in both countries meet the requirements of export markets. This means qualitative case studies of horticultural enterprises but based on some hard data on productivity as well. The research needs to looks closely at how workforce issues fit into lifting productivity. For example, how important are short-term, once-only seasonal workers compared with workers who return from year to year?

    The obvious initiator of such a study is the the Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Productivity Division which has just published a one enterprise study of the efficiency of horticultural labour case study on the productivity of seasonal workers and working holiday makers.

    With all the focus on ways to improve the performance of the horticulture sector, learning from New Zealand can only do some good.

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