Grabouw fruit packer emphasises worker wellness with themed activities.
At Grabouw’s Two-a-Day, one of the land’s largest apple and pear sorting, packing and storing businesses, its focus on staff wellness and wellbeing is renowned and evidenced by a dedicated programme of activities.
Under the eye of Nursing Sister Cheryl Bozman, the wellness programme helps maintain the social cohesion required to run a successful business that so relies on the over two thousand permanent and seasonal staff members.
“We have a full programme of initiatives and events. Some, like the annual market day, seeks to teach entrepreneurial and organisational skills while others, like our dress-up to watch South Africa in the World Cup rugby, (see photo) was a fun way to do something together. We also celebrated our win at the highly competitive Tru-Cape Packhouse Challenge race in August last year.” Bozman explains.
With apples and pears high on the list of foods that provide antioxidants, fibre and hydration and recognised all around the world as an important part of a healthy diet, the good-health focus at Two-a-Day is also essential. “While many initiatives are there to support the sick, our bigger focus is to remain healthy. To this end, Two-a-Day has Dr Anthony Hess on the full-time staff along with a well equipped on-site surgery.
According to Two-a-Day Human Resources Director, Dimitri Jacobs, the programme that Sr Bozman and Dr Hess oversee has already delivered a nearly 1.5% reduction in absenteeism which, according to Jacobs, amounts to an annualised saving of about R1 million in lost productivity.
As a shareholder of Tru-Cape Fruit Marketing, South Africa’s largest exporter of South African apples and pears, Managing Director Roelf Pienaar says that Tru-Cape’s clients care about the lives of workers on farms and in the processing businesses. “A reputation for championing our staff and their health and wellness is no longer a nice to have. We expect it of ourselves and our clients expect it of us. The Two-a-Day wellness programme not only plays a significant role in how people feel at work and their consequent improved productivity but also in our ability to achieve the best value for the fruit we sell so that our growers are able to reinvest in future crops. It is not an exaggeration to say that our land’s food security is impacted by it.” Pienaar ends.
Tru-Cape exported more than three million 18kg equivalent cartons of apples and pears from Two-a-Day last year while 2.1 million cartons where sold on the South African market. That’s over five million cartons of fruit mainly from the Grabouw, Villiersdorp and Vyeboom valleys that Two-a-Day growers produced and Tru-Cape sold last year.