Nelson natural products company Nutrizeal has made major cuts to its workforce after the unexpected loss of a significant contract.
The Appleby-based business has reduced its fulltime equivalent staff from 56 to 33, with most of the job lossess being in the company's supercritical extraction plant - the only one in the southern hemisphere, and one of just a handful in the world.
It is unclear how many staff the cuts affect. Staff were informed early this month.
The Nelson Mail understands that Nutrizeal has lost a Norwegian krill processing contract, but the company will only say that the cuts were due to a loss of significant business.
The company makes natural health products, food ingredients, and ingredients for the nutraceutical and animal health industries.
General manager Grant Wilson declined to be interviewed but released a statement saying that while the company was working hard to secure new business, staff levels had be reduced in line with its current level of business.
Company management understood that it was a stressful time, he said, and support was being provided to affected staff. They had been given information on how to access support services.
The company's annual turnover has not been made public, but Mr Wilson said in a Nelson Mail feature in June that it was a multimillion-dollar figure. The feature also reported then that 80 per cent of its clients were offshore.
The company's founder and managing director, Richard Daniell, stepped down earlier this year.
Mr Wilson declined to explain the long-term implications of the loss of the contract, or go into detail about the nature of the cuts.
- © Fairfax NZ News