05 - Our People

Takenga tūturu
True for generations
I of III

People & culture

Total employees
permanent employees
casual employees
fixed term employees
Wāhine (women)
Tāne (men)

Māori employees at Moana
total workforce are Māori
of our executive team is Māori
of new recruits were Māori

Covid19 support for our people

Last year in the annual report we committed to measuring ourselves against strengthening diversity, inclusion and belonging. Covid19 has in fact unified our approach to a whānau-centric workplace culture which brings together our people who operate in remote communities and in urban centres.

We worked to ensure unimpeded operations across our sites as an essential service, with employment and income a key focus as time progressed and the focus of communication to our staff. Identifying and working with regional partners, our people and Iwi across Aotearoa to ensure we are able to bring the best talent into Moana along with our own homegrown talent through a number of internal promotions across Moana.

We are a nationwide business and that brought into focus our line managers and site managers who stepped up and did a terrific job disseminating critical communications to site staff to ensure compliance and best practice procedures were followed. Maintaining the balance of being fiscally responsible to our shareholders and ensuring our people are looked after in line with our value of manaakitanga was key. As such compliance was one of the critical success measures over the course of the reporting period for People and Culture.

We supported staff with revised employee protocols and clarity on pay and leave entitlements.

We continued to work closely with our union partners, beyond collective bargaining, to ensure the safety of our people and continued operations.

Mike Kenney - Tio, Whangaroa
Carmen Kent - Kai Ora, Palmerston North


Whilst we were unable to roll out the bi-annual engagement survey due to Covid19, our teams continued to make engagement with our people a priority in these challenging times.

Action planning, listening and implementing are the key engagement initiatives across Moana we are looking to assess, particularly around internal communication and recognition.

Leadership and development

The Executive Leadership Team completed a two day offsite in February, where it designed a leadership programme to create connection and alignment critical to improving Moana’s performance. The programme is based on developing deeper levels of trust, understanding and unlocking teamwork.

Our people leaders must have the skills, tools, and resources to grow their teams, and drive high performance. To date over 50% of leaders have completed a core management course focused on fundamentals.

50% of leaders have completed a core management course focused on fundamentals.

Phase One of our development framework – Discover and Explore – was completed which included review of existing materials and internal interviews.

We have an initial draft framework and commenced content creation of learning modules.

Safety and wellbeing

We continue to have a strong focus on critical and other risks to mitigate and control throughout FY21.

Critical risks are those which can have serious consequences regardless of whether there is high or low likelihood of the risk to eventuate.

Our risk focus areas were determined by an analysis of the data we have collected over the past few years through our increased reporting, although which can have lesser consequences but are more frequent and probable.

The analysis was an extremely worthwhile undertaking for the safety management of our staff across the regions which served us increasingly well as the pandemic continued.

Our incident and observation reporting increased by 17 percent on last year and has increased 42 percent since FY19. This was despite lockdown impediments which is very pleasing.

Our reporting structure provides us with enduring insights into events which we can direct our focus and resources to.

Numbers we focus on are our levels of engagement around reporting and participation by leaders and workers. We are delighted to observe increases in our overall reporting and our leader participation in health and safety, which grew by 52 percent.

While we do utilise the information found in our graphs, pie charts and histograms, we understand the real measure that will make a difference is our people speaking up and our leaders and workers engaging in safety conversations – whether that is at committee meetings, through the Tackle Box or toolbox meetings.

Having an environment where our people are comfortable to speak up and suggest an idea, create a solution to a problem or highlight an issue is where we will find success.
Nutana Wiki - Tio, Parengarenga

Nutana Wiki - Tio, Parengarenga

Without question safety will always be a key priority. Equally important though is creating a productive and engaging environment for our people, being financially viable, being sustainably responsible and making a positive change to our staff, their whānau and our shareholders’ lives. This is the company Moana continues to strive to be.

One does not supersede the other, it isn’t a priority whereby it moves up and down the list.

It is now becoming a way of operating and collaborating for all of us at Moana. Our critical success measure is the safety and improved wellbeing of our kaimahi.

We are pleased to report the ongoing leadership being shown by our Board. There were more than twenty-five director health and safety visits at Moana sites across Aotearoa.

To provide fresh safety eyes across the site, visits also provide Directors an opportunity to see our strategy in action and to spend some time with our regional staff.

The schedule was only stopped in its tracks by the August Covid19 lockdown, but we look forward to hosting our Directors throughout FY22.

Wiri Tio Team celebrate Pink Shirt Day

Wiri Tio Team celebrate Pink Shirt Day

Wellbeing initiatives through our wellbeing programme, Hikoi ki te Ora, resulted in strong participation at all sites. These included Samoan Language Week, replacing vending machines at some of our larger facilities with healthy alternatives, Pink Shirt Day, Matariki, Unsung Heroes, Financial and Mental Wellbeing.

We also conducted our first Wellbeing Survey and received a healthy 67 percent participation rate with a number of responses in Tongan, Samoan and English. The results of the survey enable us to develop further initiatives targeted at areas most wanted and needed.

Moana New Zealand’s Wellbeing Survey attracted a solid participation rate of 67% across all sites

Moana New Zealand is an early adopter of fever screen technology as another tool in our toolkit to provide continuity of our business and monitoring the health of our kaimahi.

We were the second organisation in the country to implement fever screens in response to Covid19 and latterly as an OMAR requirement for China exports. The fever screens only allow access to parts of our Mt Wellington premise if the monitored person records a safe temperature reading.

This is one example of our Covid19 response. Other measures include communication, supporting information around vaccinations, supporting our teams through changes to alert levels, being responsive to the needs of our team members working at home and to our frontline workers.

Tio Team Whangaroa

Tio Team Whangaroa

Kaimahi feature on pioneer TV programme

A highlight for our people this year was seeing themselves and our operations feature in a full length episode for the first-ever series of Home, Land and Sea.

Funded by Te Māngai Pāho, it showcases whānau, hapū and Iwi-based enterprises putting Māori on the global map.

Moana New Zealand’s inclusion connected our people during a difficult year and made us feel part of something special.

From the factory and frontline, to our process workers and farm harvesters across regions where we operate, the programme captured everything our brand story and name exists to achieve.

We felt privileged to be included and grateful to tell our story on Maori Television. We thank Jack Media, Te Māngai Pāho and all staff who shared their views with the nation.

Watch the full video


Scholarship recipients the future of industry

Leaving a legacy for an individual as esteemed as Whaimutu Dewes is best summed up by Māori intergenerational customary practices. For those living near the coastline, being able to gather, provide and eat kaimoana – particularly in front of marae and homes for pataka – is at the heart of Māori identity.

To acknowledge Whaimutu’s long contribution and commitment to Māori fisheries, Te Pae Tawhiti Scholarship has been created by Moana New Zealand. It’s awarded annually to a Māori tertiary student enrolled in marine studies, aquaculture or in a kaimoana enhancement-related field.

We sat down with inaugural scholarship recipients Daria Bell and Te Atawhai Amaru-Tibble.

How does your whakapapa influence your decision to study aquaculture?


Being Māori I believe that it will help me to provide kaimoana for my whānau in the future. Kaimoana is a big part of my culture and putting food on the table. It’s influenced me as kaitiaki to look after what we have. Aquaculture is about finding more sustainable practices to ensure we’re safeguarding as well as producing kaimoana for whānau, for New Zealand and for the world.

Te Atawhai:

It goes back to my roots on the Chatham Islands. My great grandfather moved from Timaru to marry my great grandmother and they started fishing. They left just before the crayfish boom and returned just after. That seeded a strong bond within my extended whānau towards fisheries and I reckon aquaculture and fisheries is an interesting study path to go down.

Are there particular species or marine life aspects you’re most interested in?


Kina, pāua, kōura and ika – snapper, tarakihi, kingfish. All the ones that my whānau are most interested in harvesting. My interest areas are influenced by my upbringing and by the species Māori are accustomed to gathering.

Te Atawhai:

Kōura. I really want to understand its movement, habitat, how we can make it a more sustainable species, and how it can be farmed. I’m particularly motivated by deep sea farming. I’ve seen deep sea initiatives in the US which create artificial reef habitat systems enabling similar kōura species to live and grow healthily.

Pāua Kahurangi

How does the scholarship make a difference beyond the obvious financial support?


It almost feels like the scholarship makes my study more sustainable as it helps to know that others are behind me. My perspective as a kaitiaki is the same as Moana’s. Other people and organisations who share that same whakaaro is important to me.

Te Atawhai:

Speaking honestly, it gets my name out there in the industry, at very least within Moana New Zealand and the networks it sits within – which is equal to getting a degree in my view [laughs]. The world is a small place. My motto is mending bridges not burning them.

What do you see as the future of aquaculture for Aotearoa?


I see it being more sustainable and more about giving back – we’ll be able to take what we have in our aquaculture tanks and replace what has been over harvested. Restore the balance of Tangaroa to provide food for everyone but ensure we’re not causing any more harm to the environment at the same time.

Te Atawhai:

Simple. All things innovation in kōura.

What is your message to tamariki in having a greater appreciation for the mauri of Tangaroa and whenua?


Encourage them to have more appreciation – that is a life source. We’ve always had that connection; we should give back to it.

Te Atawhai:

There’s enough in the ocean for everyone. You only take enough for a feed, that’s what I was always taught. It’s the same on land too, not just with fishing.

Where do you see yourself in ten years’ time?


Going around rural communities in Aotearoa telling people that they can have futures in science. Māori are natural scientists and I want to let them know that this course of study is available to them. I also want to educate people about the nutritional benefits of kaimoana to preserve cultural understanding of healthy eating.

Te Atawhai:

I see myself having Steve Tarrant’s job (CEO of Moana New Zealand). Or Mark Ngata’s (General Manager Inshore of Moana New Zealand). You’ve got to aim high and I’m excited.

Te Atawhai Amaru-Tibble

Te Atawhai Amaru-Tibble

Te Atawhai Amaru-Tibble is studying towards a Bachelor of Commerce and Science majoring in aquaculture, fisheries management and fisheries science at the University of Otago. He is of Ngāti Mutunga a Wharekauri, Te Whanau a Karuwai and Ngāti Porou descent.

Daria Bell

Daria Bell

Daria Bell is studying towards a Bachelor of Science majoring in aquaculture at the University of Waikato. She is of Te Whanau-ā-Apanui, Ngāti Tūwharetoa, Ngāti Maniapoto, and Te Arawa descent. She was raised in Raukokore situated on the East Coast of the North Island.


Sealord partners with iwi to fill jobs

Sealord has been engaging with iwi as part of a drive to increase the number of New Zealanders on board its vessels.

Seth Gerrard, Willie Smith and Tremain Turfry-Ross, from Gisborne, are the first new recruits to have taken up roles within the business as a result of the initiative. They started their transition through Sealord with experience gained initially in the Wetfish Factory before testing out their sea legs on board a Sealord deepsea vessel.

The drive to recruit more Kiwis is in line with Sealord’s promise to the Government following border entry requests last year for foreign fishermen.

Very proactive in mobilising people to give it a go is Te Rūnanga o Tūranganui a Kiwa, which is made up of Rongowhakaata, Ngāi Tāmanuhiri and Te Aitanga a Mahaki. The connection has been inspired significantly by Industrial Global Sales Manager Kleat Nepe, who grew up in Gisborne.

From left, Kleat Nepe, Seth Gerrard and Willie Smith.

From left, Kleat Nepe, Seth Gerrard and Willie Smith.

“Expanding the Nga Tapuwae o Māui initiative to incorporate more aspects and opportunities within the industry for our partners further strengthens the relationships beyond just the commercial,” says Kleat. “Grass roots participation in the business of fishing makes Sealord accessible for all walks of iwi life and the recruitment of Seth, Willie and Tremain personifies this. The hope is that these three trailblazers set the scene for many more employment and partnership opportunities into the future.”

Sealord help whānau get to health appointments

Sealord and Te Tauihu Māori health and wellness provider Te Piki Oranga are working together to help make it easier for whānau in the Nelson Tasman region access health and wellbeing services.

Te Piki Oranga’s first corporate sponsor, Sealord is contributing funds for the next three years to cover both whānau transport costs to get to appointments, and to help get Te Piki Oranga’s kaimahi to whānau at home.

Te Piki Oranga Tumuaki Anne Hobby said Te Piki Oranga holds several contracts to deliver health and wellness services to whānau, but often they can’t get to the services they need.

“A lack of transport options can be a legitimate barrier to people having better health“, Hobby said. “Many whānau don’t have access to a car, or money for petrol, taxis or bus fares. If their mobility is impaired, it is even harder for them. It can really set some people back in their health improvement plan if they miss an appointment.“

“So, having Sealord helping whānau with travel costs means more people can get to their appointments. It is a fantastic partnership - we are thrilled Sealord can see value in the work we do.”

Sealord CEO Doug Paulin said that the sponsorship is a natural fit for Sealord.

Sealord is half-owned by Māori and 15% of our employees are Māori. It is important to us to support our people’s whānau and their communities.
Sealord CEO Doug Paulin
From left, Sealord CEO Doug Paulin and Te Piki Oranga Tumuaki Anne Hobby

From left, Sealord CEO Doug Paulin and Te Piki Oranga
Tumuaki Anne Hobby

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