A Government investment in Te Mata Mushroom Holdings Ltd will help create the largest mushroom production centre in the North Island and sustainable fulltime employment for more than 200 people, Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones has announced.
“The primary role of the business is producing compost and growing mushrooms. It is also one of the largest non-seasonal horticultural workforces in Hawke’s Bay,” Shane Jones said.
The funding will come from the $3 billion set aside for infrastructure projects in the Government’s COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund.
“This loan of $19.5 million to Te Mata Mushrooms will be used for construction projects at two Hawkes Bay sites.
Work at the Brookvale, Havelock North, site will include the expansion of the growing facilities and an upgrade of the existing composting facility. The enclosure of the buildings and use of new bio-filter technology will eliminate smell issues for Havelock North residents.
Construction at the Mt Herbert, Waipukurau, site will include the construction of a dam, which is already consented by Hawke’s Bay Regional Council, so that it is self-sufficient. Following that, construction of composting and growing facilities will begin.
The construction is expected to create 107 much-needed building and associated jobs in the region.
“Te Mata Mushrooms currently employs 120 people. It will work with the Ministry for Social Development to develop training programmes for apprentices and learning pathways for new recruits. It is expected that up to 30 per cent of the more than 200 estimated additional workforce will be Māori,” Shane Jones said.
Future growth plans include supporting independent mushroom growers through technology, compost production and marketing.
“This is a fantastic project supported by the Government that will produce huge economic and social returns for the people of Hawke’s Bay.”
Notes to editors:
All approvals are in principle and subject to contract negotiations. Investment values are also subject to change.