The Shout Magazine (New Zealand)

Now’s the perfect time to start a career in wine

New Zealand Winegrowers is supporting the launch of a new horticultural apprenticeship


Capable and qualified people are needed to keep up with growing demands of New Zealand’s booming wine industry, which will likely reach $2bn in exports annually by 2020.

To this end, New Zealand Winegrowers is supporting the launch of a new apprenticeship which aims to grow the wider horticultural industry’s workforce and support the recruitment of 100 future leaders.

It’s a collaboration between the horticulture and viticulture industries along with Primary ITO, the Ministry for Business Innovation and Employment (MBIE) and the Ministry of Social Development (MSD).

New Zealand Winegrowers CEO Philip Gregan says the scheme will help propel people forward into exciting roles within the successful wine industry.

“The sector contributes over 20,000 jobs to New Zealand and wine is now our fifth biggest export good. Exports are trending upwards – we are the third biggest exporter into the USA after France and Italy – there’s never been a better time to pursue a career in wine.”

The apprenticeships aim to upskill through on-the-job training, which aligns to industry requirements and regional needs, helping apprentices benefit from practical skills and learnings they can apply on the job. The three-year apprenticeship has been designed to replicate a typical season, so can be started anytime.

Benefits to employers include the recruitment and retention of existing staff, rewarding and securing talent, building flexibility and capability in teams, increasing productivity, helping with succession planning, and minimising health and safety risks.

“This is an encouraging first step in this sector-led, government-supported approach that improves employers’ access to reliable, appropriately skilled staff at the right time and place,” says Nathan Grennell from MBIE.

The new Apprenticeship in Horticulture Production will be launched at the Horticulture Conference in Christchurch today [July 24, 2018].

For more information on the Horticulture Production Apprenticeship visit