NZ: businessman highlights apple crisis in Nelson

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NZ: businessman highlights apple crisis in Nelson

A New Zealand businessman says some orchards in the Nelson region would 'drain less cash growing grass than apples', website reported.

John Palmer told the Nelson-Tasman Chamber of Commerce luncheon the current situation was a 'sad reflection' of one of the area's most important export industries, which might not be viable in five years time, the story reported.

The former Kiwifruit Marketing Board chairman cited problems including artificially high and volatile exchange rates and a lack of effective co-operation.

He said Enza had done an 'appalling job' with making the best of new varieties like Jazz apples, while the switch from North American and European markets to Asia had been too slow, the story reported.

He pointed to the fact banks were already taking action against growers but a 'wholesale retreat' was unlikely.

Palmer is currently chairman of Air New Zealand.

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Photo: Prevention

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