Delivery of 20 tonnes of Zespri Green Kiwifruit began at schools in Fiji today to communities affected by shortages of healthy food due to Cyclone Winston.
The donation was the result of collaboration of five companies: Zespri, T&G, Tauranga Kiwifruit Logistics, SEMCO and Maersk.
Zespri donated the fruit, Tauranga Kiwifruit Logistics helped get the fruit to T&G, SEMCO trucked from the Bay of Plenty to Auckland at no charge, Maersk Line donated the shipping and T&G stored the fruit in its coolstores in both Auckland and Fiji.
Today, T&G staff trucked the fruit to schools near the city of Nadi, with the help of the Fijian Ministry of Education.
Zespri External Relations Manager Nick Kirton says the collaboration was a great opportunity for the industry to give back to the communities that provide workers to the New Zealand horticultural industry each season.
“Around 150 Fijians each year come to New Zealand for seasonal work in our horticulture and fresh produce industries,” he says.
“We are really pleased to have been able to work together to get healthy, fresh New Zealand produce to our Pacific neighbours.”
T&G Fiji Managing Director Bobby Sharma says it was all about getting nutritious food to people who’ve had a hard time in the recent cyclone.
“We just want to do our bit to help provide nutritious food to those kids.”
Fiji’s Minister for Education, Heritage and Arts, Dr Mahendra Reddy officiated the handover, attended by New Zealand’s Deputy Head of Mission, Amanda Vercoe, and Zespri and T&G representatives.