“Horticultural businesses will rot as a direct result of the Government’s negligence,” says ACT Leader David Seymour.
“Even with the help of MSD, growers like Perry’s Berries can’t get sufficient Kiwi workers to pick fruit.
“The overseas workers who are allowed into the country from Covid-free parts of the world will be required to go into managed isolation on arrival. That will be too late for some businesses.
“Businesses have reported to us that Ministers have gone into hiding, refusing to answer questions and referring enquires to their colleagues.
“People are losing their livelihoods because the Government is making it too hard for horticulturalists to find workers.
“The new government must take a different approach at the border.
“It’s willing to allow billionaire America’s Cup team owners, movies stars and their nannies, international sportspeople, and musicians performing at summer festivals into the country as essential workers.
“But horticulturalists like Perry’s Berries have been forgotten.
“Labour must take ACT’s risk proportionate approach and allow quarantine-free travel for workers from Covid-free countries in the Pacific.
“This situation was entirely foreseeable. Horticulturalists need overseas workers to pick fruit every year.
“The Government knew that growers would need to recruit from overseas at this time of the year. What has it been doing for the last six months?”