There’s plenty of cherries – but not enough cherry pickers in Otago

Orchards across Central Otago frequently struggle to find enough workers to pick their fruit, especially with the regions hot weather making this season two-weeks earlier than usual.

At 45 South Management in Cromwell, the country’s largest cherry exporter, they need more than 400 workers at the peak of the season.

They try to employ as many New Zealanders as they can but it’s never enough, so many of their employees are here on working holiday visas.

“Sometimes it’s really difficult and we’re lucky that New Zealand is one of the destinations that these young kids want to travel to,” said Tim Jones, owner of 45 South Management.

“So maintaining the working holiday scheme is really important to us.”

The Summerfruit industry is also on the rise, last season it brought in $130 million and those in the industry predict it will grow to $500 million in the next 10 or 15 years.

Many growers are concerned the new government’s tougher stance on immigration could cause problems finding workers in the future.

Immigration Minister, Iain Lees-Galloway, says they aren’t making any changes to working holiday visas.

However he says they are looking to expand the Recognised Seasonal Employer (RSE) scheme, which brings more than 10,000 workers from the Pacific Islands to orchards and vineyards across the country each year.

Source: https://www.tvnz.co.nz/one-news/new-zealand/theres-plenty-cherries-but-not-enough-cherry-picker-in-otago

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26 thoughts on “There’s plenty of cherries – but not enough cherry pickers in Otago

  1. Romeo salutan on Reply

    I am a filipino, currently working with the Philippine government, for a change I want to apply and be part of your team, I don’t have a clue how to apply as picker

  2. ej_sila on Reply

    I want to apply this job. I’m working here in Hongkong as a domestic helper for almost 5years. And I’m trying to find a better job to earn more money for my family. Here’s my email ad [email protected]

  3. Kazuyo Mori on Reply

    Hi, my name is Kazuyo Mori.
    I am looking for a cherry job!
    I have experience strawberry and blueberry picker before in new zealand.
    I am working holiday now.
    I have visa about nine month.
    Please let me know if you need me.
    And, please give me more your information.

    Thank you

  4. Kevin Rutapiri on Reply

    I want to apply for this job… Iam a Solomon islander and married to a new Zealand citizen whom parents are from Solomon islands…. Currently im still in the still in the Solomon islands..

  5. New Zealand Jobs on Reply

    Hi all,

    Thank you for your messages.
    This new story, unfortunately, is not a job listing. To apply for a role as a Cherry Picker please register your interest for jobs in 2018 at backpackerjobs.co.nz

  6. Ignacio L. Tierra jr. on Reply

    I am willing to work in new zealand as fruit picker. I had been in Bahrain for six years as a store keeper. I hope you can accomodate me in your good company.

  7. Ignacio L. Tierra jr. on Reply

    I am willing to work in new zealand as fruit picker. I had been in Bahrain for six years as a store keeper. I am 50 years old physically fit and working in as a jeepney driver her in the Philippines.

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