PGF boosts innovation and employment in Hawke’s Bay

Published: Oct 11, 2019 · Updated: Dec 1, 2020

Tagged with:

  • News and announcements
  • Hawke's Bay

Over $14 million of Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) investment was announced for five Hawke’s Bay projects last month.

Meka Whaitiri, Denise Eaglesome, James Baty, and Willie Jackson

From left: Labour MP Meka Whaitiri, Denise Eaglesome and James Baty from the Wairoa Young Achievers Trust, and Employment Minister Willie Jackson.

As one of the PGF’s surge regions these latest announcements build on the Hawke’s Bay farming and horticulture strengths, while supporting innovation in business, employment opportunities and higher wages for locals.

The following funding was announced:

  • $12 million for the Hawke’s Bay Food Innovation Hub,
  • $300,000 for Apollo Foods, and
  • $305,000 for the Wairoa Young Achievers Trust

Te Ara Mahi Funded projects included:

  • $1.359 million for the Ngāti Pāhauwera Training and Employment Project, and
  • $557,000 for the Turners and Growers Emerging Leaders Pathways

The $12m investment in the Food Innovation Hub gives the region’s horticulture, food, beverage, and agri-technology industries a major boost and will encourage collaboration, innovation and sharing of resources.

Hastings Mayor Sandra Hazlehurst said she welcomed the significant investment from the PGF into the project. “Hastings District Council is leading this project because we believe the establishment of a Hawke’s Bay Food Innovation Hub will be a game changer for the region by facilitating innovation and commercialising new products.”

The two Te Ara Mahi announcements were about lifting the capability of local people with skills, training and employment opportunities and gaining access to meaningful work.

Ngāti Pāhauwera Commercial Development Ltd’s Training and Employment project will receive $1.359m for training and skills development to support an investment we made in June to enable Ngāti Pāhauwera to unlock the forestry and horticulture potential of their land.

Turners and Growers (T&G), are getting PGF support to up skill and build the management and leadership capabilities of at least 100 local horticulture workers, which not only helps with a skills shortage in the industry but will lead to 40 new local jobs.

Innovation was again at the forefront with Apollo Foods gaining support to investigate the expansion of their state of the art beverage manufacturing facility and The Apple Press product line.

The PGF can see the huge potential in the expansion projects that enable investment in specialised technology, and grow more skilled job opportunities for local people.

The PGF He Poutama Rangatahi programme in Wairoa supports The Wairoa Young Achievers Trust (WYAT) to give rangatahi a pathway into work and education in the region. This practical support includes: driver licensing, work training, pastoral care and post-employment support.

These funding announcement are consistent with the PGF’s commitment to support regions with their regional economic development capability. They will grow businesses, create skilled jobs and improve productivity for the Hawke’s Bay region.