10th May 2022 China / Covid-19
Shanghai port congestion could prolong elevated freight prices, while the foodservice shutdown means strong headwinds for dairy demand.
The hospitality industry has welcomed the ditching of capacity limits in time for the important Easter, Anzac Day and school holidays.
Air New Zealand says it will restart its food and beverage offering on domestic flights from Friday 15 April following the country’s move overnight to the orange light setting.
Bars, cafes, and restaurants will be able to fill up again with capacity and seating rules lifted, says Chris Hipkins.
Hospitality businesses will continue to struggle following the government’s decision to keep the country in the red setting of the Covid-19 Protection Framework, say industry groups.
It means capacity limits for indoor gatherings, events and hospitality venues remain capped at 200 people.
The government has updated guidance to businesses now that most workplaces will not require vaccine mandates from 4 April.
Hamilton council has approved a 50% reduction in fees for food safety verifications that take place before the end of June this year.
The changes do not go far enough to help struggling businesses, says industry groups.
Capacity limits for outdoor events will lift completely this weekend and increase to 200 indoors for hospitality venues.
The 2022 New Zealand AgriFood Talks event has been cancelled because of the Omicron outbreak.
Hundreds of people are required to plug gaps in Countdown’s supply chain because of Covid-19 absenteeism.
More than five thousand businesses in Auckland that struggled through the Delta lockdown have received more than $17m financial support through a targeted support scheme.
This year’s Fieldays has been postponed until late November because of disruption from the Omicron outbreak.
Meat processors are under pressure and suffering delays because of Omicron absenteeism, according to the Meat Industry Association and Beef + Lamb New Zealand.
Some $7.67bn dollars was spent online shopping by New Zealanders last year, with 26% of people buying groceries digitally, according to research group Canstar Blue.
Business New Zealand has called the government reduced self-isolation for positive Covid cases “a pragmatic response.”
The isolation period for Covid-19 cases and household contacts will go down to seven days from 10 at 11.59pm on Friday 11 March.
National Road Carriers is warning a sharp rise in fuel prices will result in increased freight costs.
Foodstuffs South Island is distributing more than one million rapid antigen tests to its supermarkets, more than 250 businesses and donating a number to charity.
Consumer New Zealand has found massive price differences for Rapid Antigen Tests, ranging from $6.50 to $19 per test.
Businesses struggling with Omicron have received the first payment from the government’s financial support scheme.
Omicron absenteeisms are piling pressure on supply chains, with manufacturers scrambling to retrain and redeploy staff.
Businesses that are covered by the Close Contact Exemption Scheme can access rapid antigen tests after a further 10 million arrived in the country over the weekend.
Food manufacturers should prepare for “highly dynamic” food markets in the year ahead as pandemic disruption to supply chains, input costs and consumer behaviour continues, says Rabobank.
t to phase 3 of the Omicron response and an adjustment to conditions in the government’s financial support package announced on Monday.
Rapid antigen tests will also become more widely available in March.
Little Creatures says operating under the red traffic light system was “uncertain and precarious”.
Hospitality New Zealand is warning many of the hardest-hit businesses in the sector may be ineligible for the government’s new support package.
It will help but many in hospitality may still have to shut, say industry groups.
Three payments capped at $24k each will be available for hard-hit businesses.
Auckland’s Business Chamber wants clarity from the government over how companies can access rapid antigen tests.
The prominent hospitality brand has called on the government to throw a lifeline to the sector.
Food sector stakeholders have labelled the government’s rapid antigen test distribution plan “unreliable” as concerns grow over access to RATs.
The grocery group is using its procurement heft to source more than 1 million rapid antigen tests on behalf of around 250 companies.
Half the industry has seen revenue plummet by more than 40% since NZ shifted to red, says Hospitality NZ.
The shift will see more widespread use of the govt’s test to return-to-work policy for critical workers in industries such as food.
Scan in, wear a mask, shop normally, be kind – a message from Countdown.
Hospitality operators are battling to stay open – and afloat – after Covid cases force widespread closures at the resort.
The business sector is critical of a move to raise the minimum wage 6% during the expected Omicron wave.
The supply of RATs remains a concern for some industries, while NZFGC calls the exemption scheme a ‘pragmatic step’.
Restaurants are reporting a near 60% overall decline in revenues since the Covid-19 pandemic began.
Wanaka’s food and wine festival has been cancelled this year because of the current red-light Covid-19 restrictions.
A Bay of Plenty food event plans to go ahead despite current Covid-19 restrictions.
Critical worker close contacts can keep going to work instead of isolating if they return a negative RAT under the new scheme.
Industries will know by the end of this week which of them are considered critical, says Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.
Farmers and primary producers are getting financial assistance to prepare for an Omicron outbreak.
F&B stakeholders including HortNZ and NZKFG are still waiting to see if exporters are considered critical businesses.
With Covid cases ballooning in the city, how did the food manufacturer manage to stay open during the peak?
The West Coast’s Wildfoods Festival has been scrapped, the first time in its 34-year history, due to Covid capacity restrictions at the red setting.
By requisitioning rapid antigen tests, has the government exposed food industry directors to claims of recklessness?
The Kraft Heinz Company chair Mike Pretty is to share a Sydney factory Omicron case study with the government.
The government has ordered a further 36 million rapid antigen tests (RATs) to help the country deal with a widespread Omicron outbreak.
Staff shortages slowed manufacturing, choked distribution and pushed costs sky-high for the baked goods manufacturer.
Jacinda Ardern says the country will remain in red “for some weeks” to combat the spread of Omicron.
The government will consider providing more targeted help for the most affected sectors.
Heineken is opening two pop-up barbershops in selected venues around central Auckland to tie-in with the country’s move to the Covid-19 Protection Framework ‘traffic light’ system on Friday 3 December.
Support up to $24,000 will be available for businesses in Auckland, Northland and Waikato as those regions transition to the new traffic light Covid-19 Protection Framework. The one-off transition payment MORE »
Much of the top half of the North Island will start the new Covid-19 Protection Framework on Friday at red.
The free NZ Pass Verifier app to scan and verify My Vaccine Passes is now available for businesses and events to download.
Employers will soon be able to use a tool from the government the assess whether they need to have their staff vaccinated.
Businesses will open under the new Covid-19 Protection Framework on Friday 3 December but no region will start in green.
DB Breweries is offering every fully vaccinated employee $250 to spend on drinks and eating out to encourage Covid-19 vaccination and provide support for the hospitality sector.
However, people will need to be fully vaccinated or show a negative Covid test before leaving the region.
The Kāpiti Food Fair has been cancelled due to Covid uncertainty.
The government must set a date for when Auckland’s borders will be lifted and hospitality venues can re-open, says Hospitality New Zealand.
New food and grocery outlets have been added to the Ministry of Health’s locations of interest as Covid-19 continues to creep south.
Foodstuffs supermarkets have teamed up with Canterbury District Health Board’s vaccination team to host community clinics.
While retail and tourist attractions will be able to open, hospitality still suffers in Covid-19 alert level 3.2.
There is no evidence of Covid-19 transmission via food or food packaging, says a new report.
The top half of the Far North has gone into Covid-19 alert level 3 after two unlinked community cases were detected.
Without a law change, it is risky for employers to mandate vaccination in any workplace, says Horticulture New Zealand.
The supermarket chain is consulting on a proposal that will see all of its 18,000 employees subject to a vaccine mandate.
The inability of restaurants to open before step 3 of the Covid-19 alert level system is disappointing for the industry, says the Restaurant Association.
Retailers, museums, and zoos will be able to open as Covid restrictions loosen.
Food and grocery outlets from Northland to Christchurch are now locations of interest in relations to the current Delta outbreak, according to the Ministry of Health.
A shipment of 300,000 rapid antigen tests has arrived in New Zealand and is now being rolled out across some of the country’s largest businesses as part of a government-approved trial.
Two cases from one household have been detected in the city.
The government has confirmed a package of changes to improve rent relief measures for both landlords and tenants as part of the Covid-19 Response (Management Measures) Legislation Bill.
Mandating vaccination for hospitality staff is welcome but it could present challenges and extra costs, say industry groups.
Staff vaccination will soon be compulsory for hospitality, events, and other close-contact businesses.
The latest locations of interest in connection with the Delta outbreak include a raft of food retailers including the first South Island locations in the current outbreak
The government is boosting payments to businesses affected by the Delta outbreak as the country transitions to a new Covid-19 Protection Framework.
The Restaurant Association has welcomed a move by the government to introduce an enhanced business support package.
The produce giant warns its FY21 profit could fall as much as 76% from the $16.6m it posted in 2020.
Super Saturday exceeded expectations with 130,002 doses of the Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine delivered across the country.
A new international survey from global public opinion and data company YouGov has underlined the contribution hospitality venues make to social and mental wellbeing.
Countdown and Foodstuffs are supporting Super Saturday’s Vaxathon to help drive up the country’s vaccination rate.
Foodstuffs North Island, Countdown and Mainfreight are among more than 25 companies who have received the green light to introduce rapid antigen testing this month.
KFC is partnering with radio stations ZM and Flava to offer free chicken as part of an NZME campaign encouraging a 90% vaccination rate.
The Restaurant Association is backing a Covid-19 vaccination campaign launched by some of Wellington’s most popular restaurants and bars to encourage staff and customers to get their jabs.
The Help for Hospo fund is supporting hospitality workers in need, distributing privately donated funds to those needing additional help beyond the wage subsidy and other means.
Northland and Waikato might be able to move to level 2 this Thursday midnight.
Dozens of supermarkets and grocers have been named locations of interest in connection with the current Covid outbreak centered on Auckland.
The government is meeting business leaders today to discuss a rollout of rapid antigen tests to help keep workplaces safe.
Dozens of grocery and supermarket stores have been listed this week as locations of interest in connection with the Delta outbreak in Auckland and Waikato.
Hospitality New Zealand says the “industry’s fury is growing” with the government for not providing legal cover over vaccine certificates.
Foodstuffs North Island, Woolworths New Zealand, and Mainfreight are among a group of the country’s largest companies calling for emergency approval of rapid antigen tests.
The Employers & Manufacturers Association is calling for the carrying of digital vaccine passports to enter the workplace.
Targetted support for the hospitality sector is desperately needed if businesses in Auckland are to survive, say industry groups.
PM Jacinda Ardern outlines the government’s new three-step plan to ease restrictions in the city.
Stores have reduced hours and shifted to level 3 protocols after parts of the region entered lockdown overnight.
Hospitality New Zealand and Retail New Zealand say they have concerns about the government’s request for retail workers to get Covid-19 tests.
Measures are being taken to help businesses resolve disputes over commercial rent, says the government.
Kiwifruit exporter Zespri says it continues to work constructively with authorities following a positive test result for Covid-19 in China on a sample of fruit from the Bay of Plenty.
Just under a quarter of Restaurant Association members support a vaccine passport to enter hospitality venues and events.
Zespri says it has launched its emergency management plans and is co-operating with the relevant government agencies after a sample of its kiwifruit from the Bay of Plenty tested positive for Covid-19 in China.
Speciality grocery chain plans to introduce a vaccination clause in new employment frontline employment contracts in the wake of the Delta outbreak.
PM Jacinda Ardern says the rest of NZ will remain at level 2 but the indoor cap of 50 people will lift to 100.
Countdown Botany Downs and Pak’nSave Sylvia Park are among the latest Auckland retailers added to the Ministry of Health’s locations of interest in connection with the city’s Covid outbreak.
Prime minister Jacinda Ardern will announce at 4pm this afternoon whether the government will reduce the Covid-19 alert level 4 setting for Auckland.
Additional Auckland supermarkets, dairies and petrol stations have been added as locations of interest in connection with the Delta outbreak in Auckland.
Cassels Brewing, Bootleg Food, and Clevedon Buffalo are among the food firms to have their growth initiatives stalled.
Workers travelling through the Auckland border checkpoints are now required to produce evidence of a Covid-19 test taken in the prior seven days.
The government has approved a managed isolation and quarantine allocation pilot for exporters.
Gilmours Manukau has been named a location of interest in connection with the Delta outbreak in Auckland.
The extension of Auckland’s level 4 lockdown for at least a week increases the likelihood of more hospitality operators going out of business, says Hospitality New Zealand.
Auckland remains at level 4 until midnight Tuesday 21 September, the rest of NZ stays at level 2 until then.
The decision to keep Auckland at Covid-19 alert level 4 has triggered a third round of the wage subsidy scheme, which will open for applications at 9am this Friday.
The latest update to Delta locations of interest in Auckland sees more supermarkets added to the Ministry of Health’s list.
Cabinet will decide this afternoon whether to reduce the Covid-19 alert level 4 setting for Auckland.
Inland Revenue is seeing increased demand for resurgence support payments and other assistance schemes that it administers due to the Delta outbreak, according to revenue minister David Parker.
Latest spending figures released today by Heart of the City confirm a loss of nearly $750m of consumer spending since the first border closure in February 2020, which equates to an average of $560,000 per business.
What Delta has meant for staffing and store challenges, vaccinations and “maskholes”, according to FSNI’s CEO.
The return to alert level two means all Countdown stores outside of Auckland will move back to their regular trading hours from today, 9 September.
Small food firms battling supply chain congestion for 18 months are now being squeezed “at both ends” in the latest lockdown, with concerns growing over how long they can keep going.
The Restaurant Association is urging the government to come up with targeted support that reflects the dire situation of its members.
The 50-person limit on indoor venues will hurt already struggling operators, say industry groups.
However, the move comes with new restrictions including lower caps on the number of customers a venue can host.
Talley’s chief executive Tony Hazlett says the company is aiming to have more than 80% of its staff vaccinated as soon as possible and it is liaising with local district health boards to organise vaccination drives on-site.
Countdown stores throughout the Auckland region, from Pōkeno to Warworth, will open their doors to medical personnel, MIQ and emergency workers from 7am to 8am every day.
Businesses affected by the latest Covid-19 alert level lockdowns can apply for the next instalment of the government’s reactivated wage subsidy from today, Friday 3 September.
Otago cheese producer Whitestone has made an offer to provide free cheese to healthcare professionals in a bid to encourage staff to man a proposed drive-through Covid-19 vaccination centre in Oamaru.
The increase in spending on food was second only to IT equipment and software after the country went into its snap lockdown in mid-August.
Many hospitality businesses will fail due to the lockdown unless the government provides targeted support, says Hospitality New Zealand.
Around 40 supermarkets have been added to the Ministry of Health’s list of locations of interest in connection with the current Delta outbreak.
F&B manufacturers are keen to get essential services staff vaccinated but it’s not easy, despite government encouragement.
Northland can move to level 3 this Thursday but Auckland will stay in level 4 lockdown until 14 September.
The government is in “really close contact” with the country’s supermarkets to support them through lockdown challenges, says PM Jacinda Ardern.
The Commerce Commission has reminded all businesses supplying essential services in the current nationwide Covid-19 lockdown of their obligations under the Commerce Act.
However, Auckland could stay at level 4 for a further two weeks.
More than 2100 Countdown staff members are isolating across New Zealand.
The Tip Top bread owner boosts production to meet surging lockdown demand, but it comes as costs escalate across the group.
The council’s CEO has warned that food manufacturing could soon be critically impacted by staff shortages.
Sales and merchandising agencies are stepping up to help supermarkets cope with reduced staff numbers with merchandisers working overtime and select product deliveries going straight to stores
The supermarket chain has more than 1,900 team members across Auckland and Wellington isolating and it expected that number to rise.
The Motor Trade Association has expressed its frustration at a rule change made by the Ministry for Business, Innovation and Employment that prevents service stations selling hot drinks and bakery food.
Distributors are seeing demand spike from retail, helping to plug the gap left by the closed foodservice channel.
Online independents are picking up consumers from under-the-pump bricks and mortar rivals, although not all can side-step supply chain pressures.
Four supermarkets have been added this morning to the list of locations of interest connected to the Delta outbreak.
The government’s Covid-19 Resurgence Support Payment is now open for application.
The snap lockdown has piled more pressure on already congested supply chains, says the company’s MD, Don Braid.
The supermarket group expects the number of staff affected to keep rising as locations of interest and close contact lists grow.
PM Jacinda Ardern says there are 14,000+ contacts, some of whom are in the South Island.
The government is introducing mandatory record keeping is being introduced for busy places and large gatherings to ensure it can contact trace quickly.
Dozens of stores have been affected with staff being relocated to cope with demand and to try and plug gaps caused by the Delta outbreak.
Buy NZ Made is urging shoppers to shop online from food and beverage companies, buy vouchers or place an order that can be shipped when the country moves down alert levels.
The government is restarting childcare for workers in Alert Level 4 businesses and services, which was available during last year’s national lockdown, education minister Chris Hipkins has confirmed.
A long lockdown could play havoc with new product launches, change customer demand patterns and result in distribution delays.
We do not yet know the full scale of this Delta outbreak, says Jacinda Ardern.
The Dairy and Business Owners Group is calling for enhanced police support and Covid-19 vaccination prioritisation for essential workers at the country’s convenience retailers.
With the foodservice channel shut, manufacturers are looking to supermarkets to pick up the slack.
Foodstuffs is running a ‘no mask, no entry’ policy, whereas Countdown plans to avoid any potential conflict.
Supermarkets, restaurants, bars, and liquor stores are among dozens of locations visited by current Covid cases.
The government is today expected to provide details on a move to bump supermarket workers up the vaccination priority list which would see jabs being given on-site.
Retailers and manufacturers stand up lockdown protocols to cater for customers and protect workers.
Coromandel’s Star and Garter Hotel is among more than a dozen hospitality, tourism, and retail outlets named locations of interest.
The hospitality sector acknowledges the necessity of the snap lockdown, which deals another blow to struggling businesses and scuppers events.
The government will activate the Covid-19 Resurgence Support Payment (RSP) and the Wage Subsidy Scheme (WSS) to support businesses during the nationwide lockdown.
More than 180 primary sector leaders joined a virtual meeting with agriculture minister Damien O’Connor this morning.
“Keep calm, be kind,” says Countdown, as stores are inundated across the city.
Business travel, the ability to access skilled staff, and the hospitality sector will all benefit from a successful implementation.
Floriditas, Lido Cafe, Highwater Eatery and One Red Dog restaurants are among the venues implementing cleaning protocols.
Wellington’s Jack Hackett’s bar, Te Papa and a Rydges hotel are among the initial locations of interest connected to an Australian visitor who tested positive for Covid-19 upon return to Sydney.
The Government has activated the Resurgence Support Payment, in its latest round of Covid-19 support packages.
Kiwis ordered 90,000 batches of the dish this year, according to Menulog.
From the Billy Goat Curry, to the Dizengoff Classic, the list aims to support local operators in the wake of Covid.
Stuart Nash says smaller businesses are predominantly bearing the brunt of merchant service fees.
Katherine Rich calls for a national grocery code.
The party’s leader David Seymour says the government should work with the region’s horticulturists.
Summerfruit NZ says growers have received more job applications than usual for this time of year.
Covid-19 food contamination has made headlines around the world, and Professor French says more research is needed.
Chinese authorities say the virus has been detected on beef and tripe and packaging from NZ, Brazil and Bolivia.
Eighteen fishermen have been confirmed to have Covid-19 at a managed isolation facility in Christchurch