ZESPRI Applauds the Primary Growth Partnership Initiative

Media Release - 28 May 2009

The announcement today of the National Government funding initiative, which will herald an investment of an estimated $30 million for primary sector activities, has been warmly welcomed by ZESPRI.

ZESPRI CEO Lain Jager commended the government on the Primary Growth Partnership initiative saying, “This investment strategy reinforces the Government’s commitment to innovation as a strategic platform for the growth of New Zealand industry”.

“New Zealand has an enviable reputation for innovation and stellar performance within the primary sector. Additional financial support for research and development initiatives will stimulate economic growth and the realization of even greater opportunities on the international stage,” said Mr Jager.

ZESPRI’s own investment strategies for innovation in the kiwifruit industry have contributed significantly to the NZ economy. Over the last 10 years the kiwifruit industry has doubled in its export value to $780 million p.a., representing a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of approximately 7 percent. This growth rate is expected to continue.

The growth of the kiwifruit industry has been driven largely by innovation in orchard practices and the development of new cultivars. ZESPRI currently commands a premium position in the global market for New Zealand kiwifruit and is able to maintain this through an intimate understanding of customers and consumer needs.

The opportunity to partner with the government for additional innovation and investment opportunities is expected to deliver numerous benefits; continued improvements to fruit quality, taste and health benefits, as well as the development and future introduction of new kiwifruit varieties.

ZESPRI will seek to work closely with the government to partner in investment projects and implement initiatives which will enhance orchard productivity and deliver profits directly to more than 3,000 New Zealand kiwifruit growers, in order to support the continued growth and success of the industry.

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