Craig Betty

T&G Global’s director of operations Craig Betty

A commitmenttoexpandingits New Zealand apple businesswill see T&G Globalrecruit 150 permanent staff members.

T&G Global’s director of operations, Craig Betty, saidthe new roles have been created to help the company meet increasing global demand.

“Our apples business has an ambitious growth strategy in place to grow our premium Envyand Jazz applebrandsto meet worldwide demand. To achieve this vision,it’s critical we have a talented, passionate and supported team who are empowered to be their best,” said Betty.

“Despite our very best efforts to recruit locally last year, the 2020/21season was extremely challenging, withlimited availability of skilled people ready to work in the regions, combined with a reduced number of Recognised Seasonal Employer (RSE) team members.

“Thenew roles we’recreatinghave been developed to helpus deliver on our future growth objectives, whilstalsohelpingretainourexisting talent andprovide people withan opportunity to further build their skills and capabilities within our operations.”

Thenewrolesare being advertisedinternallyamongstT&G’s casual and contractedseasonalworkforce, as well as externally in key apple growing regions.

New employees willmovethroughharvest and post-harvest roles, developing a thorough understanding of both operational and growing processes. This will includespending time developing T&G’s 2D orchards, which are part ofthecompany’spathwayto automation.

“Across our growing operations, we’re re-developingour orchards to 2D plantingstructuresto supportthe efficient use ofautomation and roboticsin the future,” said Betty.

“We’recommitted to our roadmap to automation and continually optimising our supply chain to increase productivity. By ensuring we have skilledteam membersin our operations, we’llbe able tohelpfast-track this process.”

While the new roles will provide support atthepeakof the appleseason, Betty said T&G would still rely on seasonal staff to complete its harvest.

“Recruitment remains acritical focusfor the upcoming 2021/22season,” he explained. “This season our team did an incredible job hiring more than 950 NewZealandersto work alongside a reducednumber of RSE team members.However,at the peak of the seasonwe were still short around 300 people per day,which meant we lefta significantamount of fruit on trees.

“With these new positions, we expect our productivity to increase as we build our team’s skills andcapabilities, however, we’llstill requireadditionalseasonalteam members tojoinusthroughout the harvest.”