A fruitful arrival for Eastland Port

Eastland Port is geared up for a bountiful return of kiwifruit ships over the next three months.

With a total of seven ships scheduled to visit, this marks an exciting milestone for both the port and local horticulture industry.

Over 8000 pallets of kiwifruit will be exported to Japan, Korea, China, and Europe.

Eastland Port Operations Manager, Andy Kinsella said this shipment will represent the largest volume of kiwifruit the port has exported since 2008.

Following a few challenging years marked by events such as Cyclone Gabrielle, the ability to resume kiwifruit exports from Tairāwhiti is a testament to the commitment of both Zespri and Eastland Port to demonstrate resilience in the face of adversity.

“Most vessels will berth on the newly built Wharf 7, so it will be great to see our commercial wharves fully occupied for a number of days in the coming months,” said Mr Kinsella.

Adding to the excitement, several shipping containers will be loaded onto the vessels mid-season, highlighting the port's adaptability and capacity to meet changing demands.

The last time Eastland Port handled shipping containers was in the wake of Cyclone Gabrielle, as part of efforts to relieve pressure businesses and infrastructure, making use of the ‘blue-highway’.

Zespri Chief Operating Officer Jason Te Brake says it’s fantastic to see kiwifruit exports resume from Eastland Port this season.

“It’s going to be a big season ahead for us and Eastland Port plays a crucial role in helping deliver Zespri kiwifruit to markets around the world.

“With a much larger New Zealand kiwifruit crop expected, it’s important we start well and deliver consistently high-quality fruit to our customers and consumers throughout the season and we’re encouraging local growers to harvest as soon as they’re able. This will help ensure we maximise the value returned to our growers and communities like Tairāwhiti this season.”