Tegel’s IT staff and office pencil-pushers head to factory floor as shortages bite

by | Jul 20, 2022 | News

The company said this week that a combination of winter illness, national labour shortages and closed borders means that employee absence is significantly impacting the production of Tegel products.

Meanwhile employees from Tegel Foods’ head office are retraining and putting in shifts as temporary factory workers to try and ensure that the company can fill its product orders.

“This is an unprecedented situation for Tegel and it means we are simply unable to make some of our products”, said Egbert Segers, Tegel Foods Chief Executive. “That in turn means gaps in supermarket fridges and freezers. I apologise to all our customers but I want them to know that we just don’t have the people, it’s as simple as that.”

Anna from Marketing and Maureen from Sales join Rasela on the line at Tegel’s Henderson poultry factory. Credit: Tegel Foods

Segers said: “I would also like to apologise to the retailers we can’t supply. They are the ones who deal with disappointed customers and we know that it puts them in a difficult spot. We really are doing all we can to fulfil orders. At this stage it’s just impossible to say when things will be back to normal,” he said.

“We have such a dedicated group of employees and they have been incredibly loyal through Covid but the reality for many businesses like ours around the country is we are operating in an unsustainable environment and are doing what we can under the current restraints.

“One way we can help keep some of our lines running is by drafting in volunteers from head office. We’ve got marketers, planners, accountants, comms, IT people and more heading to our production plant to staff the lines.

“I want to thank those volunteers and I especially want to pay tribute to our production people who are operating under immense strain, and putting in some massive hours to keep the lines running. It’s a tough job at the best of times, and these are definitely not the best of times,” said Segers.

Tegel is a leading brand in the New Zealand market with more than 2,300 New Zealand employees, plus contract farmers. The company has processing plants in Henderson, New Plymouth and Christchurch.

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