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NZ growers say rising cost of energy, rates, wages & audits makes their work impossible

In New Zealand, energy costs have almost doubled in the past year, the minimum wage has gone up and the price of on-farm audits are rising. This all makes growing vegetables more expensive.

NZ Gourmet director of production Roelf Schreuder said the business needed to have audits for certification, water quality, chemical storage and health and safety, just to name a few. He respects everything needed to be in order, but said regulations should all come under one umbrella to make it easier for growers.

"Growers are struggling at the moment, the cost of running a business has gone up a lot but the prices they get for the produce has not. Consumers see the high prices for fruit and vegetables and think it's expensive but it doesn't always mean the growers are getting a higher return."

Schreuder said he had spoken to a lot of growers and many were thinking of getting out of the game this year because it was not feasible to grow vegetables.




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