25 Jul 2013

First phase of inquiry into Zespri complete

11:53 am on 25 July 2013

The kiwifruit growers' organisation says the first phase of its inquiry into marketer Zespri's actions in China is now complete.

Kiwifruit Growers Incorporated (KGI) president Neil Trebilcoe made the announcement at the group's annual meeting in Tauranga on Wednesday.

KGI began the investigation in March after Zespri's China subsidiary was found guilty of underpaying customs duties on kiwifruit imports and fined more than $950,000. An employee of the subsidiary was sentenced to five years in prison.

The first phase of the inquiry was to determine the performance of Zespri, its subsidiaries and importers in China and whether kiwifruit sent to China might encounter issues at the border.

The inquiry found the current method for importing kiwifruit is unlikely to be investigated by the Chinese Government.