Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking Statement

Zespri Group Limited is a corporatised co-operative, 100% owned by current and past New Zealand kiwifruit growers.  Zespri was formed in 1997 as a global marketing organisation for New Zealand kiwifruit, and now distributes premium quality kiwifruit to more than 50 countries worldwide.  The kiwifruit supply chain in New Zealand comprises approximately 3253 individual orchards that supply approximately 30 post-harvest operators, running over 40 packhouses and about 60 coolstore facilities. 

Zespri is committed to ensuring Zespri kiwifruit is grown and distributed in a socially-responsible way, and that the people who help grow our kiwifruit are treated fairly.  Zespri expects kiwifruit industry employers to comply with all employment laws and regulations and works with New Zealand Kiwifruit Growers Inc. and the NZ government to ensure industry compliance with labour standards. 

During the financial year ending 31 March 2019, Zespri undertook the following steps to ensure that slavery and human trafficking is not taking place in any of its supply chains:

  • Continued the existing Contractor Compliance Programme to ensure all on-orchard labour complies with New Zealand law and relevant international standards.  All contractors must be registered with Zespri and hold a current compliance certificate showing they meet GlobalGAP GRASP requirements , which Zespri undertakes several steps to check, including annual audits.  All growers must ensure that their contractor has a valid compliance certificate before engaging them;

  • Developed and implemented a supplier code of conduct for suppliers of goods and services to Zespri.  This obliges Zespri suppliers to:
    • Comply with all applicable laws
    • Provide a workplace free from discrimination, harassment or any other form of abuse
    • Treat employees fairly, including with respect to wages, working hours and benefits
    • Prohibit all forms of forced or compulsory labour; and
    • Prohibit the use of child labour and provide safe and healthy working conditions.

  • Supplier Code of Conduct rolled out to Growers and corresponding requirements included in the Supply Agreement for Post Harvest Facilities;

  • Worked with post harvest operators to support registration on the Sedex platform and completing the Self-Assessment Questionnaire;

  • Approved and implemented a social responsibility policy to ensure fair treatment of workers by both postharvest and kiwifruit growers;

  • Continue to endorse the Recognised Seasonal Employer (RSE) scheme which alleviates labour shortages in the horticultural industries, and directly supports community development across the Pacific by providing seasonal employment as well as pastoral care and support;   

  • Zespri works with a New Zealand pan industry governance group which is charged with ensuring appropriate steps are in place to drive ethical employment practices across the industry.

Bruce Cameron