Maori Kiwifruit Forum an industry first

Tiaki Hunia and Te Ururoa Flavell.

Click the image above to watch the video

The Maori Kiwifruit Growers Forum has been officially launched in Tauranga, representing a first for the kiwifruit industry.

The forum has been created to advocate for the interests of Maori growers in the sector and is a partnership between Maori kiwifruit growers, Te Puni Kokiri and Zespri.

Minister for Maori Development, Hon Te Ururoa Flavell attended the launch yesteday at Te Hua Whenua Orchard in Welcome Bay.

Zespri CEO Lain Jager says Zespri works for all kiwifruit growers to provide the tools and information they need to grow their businesses and Maori growers are an important and growing part of the kiwifruit industry.

“This is about supporting the development of a really strong and cohesive eco-system for Maori growers in the New Zealand kiwifruit industry. Maori have recognised the need for this forum, where specific skills and information sharing will help grow the success of their kiwifruit investment, and we are proud to support them,” says Lain.

Lain Jager, CEO Zespri.

Eleven committee members including Tiaki Hunia as Chairman, have been appointed to lead the forum, officially incorporated in March 2017, with Te Puni Kokiri committing funding for the next two years.

Speaking at the launch, Tiaki expected the forum to provide Maori growers with timely and relevant data and information to support their decision-making, and help them see increased net returns from their work.

“Longer term, we hope to lift Maori growers from their current eight percent share of Zespri production up to 20 percent.

“We also want to play a role in providing growers with opportunities to gain education and training to ensure their businesses thrive.” 

Chief Executive of New Zealand Kiwifruit Growers Incorporated (NZKGI) Nikki Johnson says NZKGI welcomed the newly-appointed Forum.

“As an advocate for all kiwifruit growers in New Zealand, NZKGI is looking forward to working closely with the Maori Kiwifruit Growers Forum in the future to support this important part of our industry.”

Forum launch.

Homman Tapsell, Doug Brown (NZKGI), Kiritapu Allan, Nikki Johnson (CEO NZKGI), Haki McRoberts, Lain Jager (CEO Zespri), Minister Flavell, James Wheeler, Marita Rancloud, Amy Porter (Zespri), Tiaka Hunia (Chairman of the Maori Kiwifruit Growers Forum).


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Special forums

Posted on 20-06-2017 09:12 | By Papamoaner

I think the answer is that anyone who wants to, is free to start their own group, and anyone who wants to join it may do so. I would have no problem if say, an Irish grower’s group was started. Then I could examine all the groups and elect to join the one I like best. Storm in a teacup! Actually, I wouldn’t mind shares in Ngai Tahu. Bit of a success story there, and I could be confident of it never being sold to the Yanks or Chinese. Now that rings a bell does it not?


Posted on 16-06-2017 19:03 | By Ness

why do they need a special forum they are orchardist like thousands of others

When are we....

Posted on 15-06-2017 23:13 | By GreertonBoy

pakehas going to be treated as equal to maori? We are here... we cant help it... we didn’t do it... we are not to blame for being here? We were born here too... How I long for racial equality.... BTW, I wonder if the shipping blockade will have any impact on maori grown chinese gooseberries getting out of Tauranga harbor to market?

more to the point

Posted on 15-06-2017 16:00 | By CC8

How Maori do I have to be to join the Maori Kiwifruit grower’s Forum? or maybe I should ask , " I am part Maori, do I have to identify as a Maori kiwifruit grower? ....(my great grandmothers grandfather was Te Mahutu of Te Ati Awa).....) , " Are (any of) the ’Maori’ growers, full blood Maori? If not what is the cutoff point ? Do the Maori growers only employ other "Maori"? Can I belong to both the Maori forum and The Caveman’s proposed European Forum.....for growers of Chinese Gooseberrys.

no junkets for the non-maori dancers

Posted on 15-06-2017 15:22 | By Captain Sensible

Zespri invited a maori contingent to the Middle East to perform hakas and dances etc when they opened up an office there. There were no junkets for any non-maori dancers.

Is there a European

Posted on 15-06-2017 12:28 | By The Caveman

Kiwifruit Growers Forum that I can join ? ?

The Forum

Posted on 15-06-2017 11:11 | By surfsup

Zespri CEO Lain Jager says Zespri works for all kiwifruit growers to provide the tools and information they need to grow their businesses and Maori growers are an important and growing part of the kiwifruit industry. Interesting at the same time as Susan Devoy talks about racism in this country. If the above statement is a true reflection of how ZESPRI works the question must be asked why do we need a separate forum for Maori, do their kiwifruit require special growing conditions that non maori growers don’t need, if not then is really is PC gone mad.