Message to our customers, collaborators and partners regarding COVID-19

31 March 2020

Tēnā koutou katoa

Aotearoa New Zealand is in lockdown and Plant & Food Research is no exception. As valued customers, collaborators and partners for our Institute I felt it important to let you know what that means in terms of our work with you all.

I will keep this brief as you are all busy adjusting your own work and personal circumstances to the realities of the COVID-19 National Emergency. Please know that the Plant & Food Research whanau wish you all the very best in these difficult times.

As of Wednesday 25 March 2020, almost all lab and field research by Plant & Food Research ceased. We have been granted specific authority to maintain and protect vital biological assets and datasets that underpin the long-term success of our primary sector partners. We are also permitted to continue in some vital biosecurity surveillance and monitoring. Every activity we undertake in these areas has a detailed set of operating procedures designed to ensure that our staff do not create a transmission risk to others in their community and that they themselves are safe. We are one hundred percent committed to a united fight against COVID-19.

Many of you will be aware that Plant & Food Research has recently made some significant investments in land and buildings designed to increase our capacity to deliver high quality science to industry and Aotearoa New Zealand. Alongside these assets we have also invested in our digital frameworks. Our people are therefore well equipped to work from home. Much like many of you, hundreds of our staff are now set up at home, on kitchen tables or home offices, working to ensure as much of Plant & Food Research remains open as possible. We’re calling it a ‘Virtual Institute’. It’s not easy, but it is starting to work and our teams are giving it all they’ve got. I have every confidence they will find all the ways they can to keep delivering for you and contributing to the Smart Green Future we believe we can achieve together.

For those of you involved in active projects with us, our business and research teams are busy analysing the impact of the COVID-19 lockdown on our current and future projects. Our key account managers will be in touch to discuss with you how we will manage projects and maximise the research we deliver to you.

Thank you for your understanding as we reset our Institute to face this new challenge. And again, our best wishes to you all.

Kia kaha kia haumaru (Be strong, be safe)

David Hughes
CEO

Contact:
Emma Timewell
Communications Manager, Corporate Communications,
Plant & Food Research Mt Albert,
120 Mt Albert Road, Sandringham
Auckland, 1025, New Zealand
EMail: media@plantandfood.co.nz
Telephone: +64-9-925 8692
Mobile: +64-21-2429 365