Prime Minister John Key called for a prompt resolution to the labelling error which has seen the layoff of 240 Alliance Group Pukeuri staff this week.
Mr Key was in North Otago and met with a number of groups to discuss both local and national issues.
He acknowledged Alliance Group Pukeuri plant’s labelling error yesterday and said he hoped the investigation would be completed swiftly.
”Hopefully they can resolve that reasonably quickly,” he said.
Pukeuri plant’s certification for China was suspended by the Ministry of Primary Industries in July after a container was shipped to China containing cartons that were incorrectly labelled.
The Ministry of Primary Industries is currently investigating the Pukeuri plant to ensure the labelling issue has been resolved and there is no threat of the error re-occurring.
It is still not known how long the 240 employees will be off work, and on Tuesday it was confirmed the workers would not be paid.
Prime Minister John Key yesterday described the Waitaki District’s economic development and future as positive.
Waitaki MP Jacqui Dean said Mr Key discussed the local irrigation investments, the North End business park and Glenavy’s milk powder plant.
”He will take something away from this visit to North Otago,” said Mrs Dean.
Mr Key spoke to six groups over the space of about five hours yesterday, including our young leaders.
”He has a quality of really listening to people,” said Mrs Dean.
Mr Key also highlighted the Holcim cement plant in Weston, which has been put on hold.
”It’s a double edged sword,” he said.
He said although it would be good for Oamaru, it would negatively affect Westport.
Mr Key discussed with Mrs Dean how she viewed the Waitaki District’s current position.
”I actually see things being quite buoyant,” she said.
By Jessie Waite