From the very beginning of the company, Sally and David have desired to make a difference through supporting causes that they are passionate about. These causes include support for young people (either through casual employment opportunities and scholarships) and support for community groups that desire to make a difference. Read the stories of some of our past young employees, and where they are now, and testimonials from some who we have supported.
On behalf of the College, myself and some very lucky Year 12 students, thank you so much to Start Afresh for sponsoring our attendance at the 2020 Zespri Conference last week. It was a wonderful experience and the students both enjoyed it and got a lot out of it.
The Katikati Advertiser will be running an article using the picture of your team and mine.
We really appreciate your ongoing support of our programme and look forward to this year’s lab-work project in the near future.
Thank you for your generous donation of kiwifruits to the Auckland City Mission. The mission relies heavily on donated items to ensure we can support people in desperate need, and is so grateful to you for helping us do that.
Last year, the Mission distributed over 25,000 food parcels to families and individuals who were struggling to make ends meet. With the impact of COVID-19, we saw a sharp increase in that demand and now expect to continue providing at least twice the number of parcels we distributed last year. Because of you and your company’s generosity, we can do that – thank you.
Knowing we have your assistance in providing nutritional, interesting food parcels and hygiene products to people who would otherwise not be able to fill their pantry and fridge is really heartening. Your contribution is a wonderful example of a company supporting their local community in the best possible way.
With you by our side, the Auckland City Mission team will continue to work every day to care for those who need it most.
Thank you again for your generous contribution. I am so grateful to you and all of your team.
With heartfelt thanks,
Start Afresh offers a scholarship to graduate students looking to undertake a postgraduate qualification in an area of horticultural science, engineering or business that will make a significant impact on New Zealand’s horticultural industry.
If you are interested in applying for this scholarship, please contact Start Afresh by email on firstname.lastname@example.org
In 2020, I was awarded the Start Afresh scholarship for my studies towards a Masters in Horticultural Science. This allowed me to dedicate more time towards my degree and work part-time at the business. The scholarship substantially removed the financial burden that comes with being a student and enabled me to excel in my course papers, achieving a GPA of 8.7 in my studies. I was also able to gain practical research experience whilst receiving relevant and valuable mentorship from Dave, Sally and my colleagues. I would like to thank Start Afresh and highly recommend this opportunity to students, as it has been imperative to my studies and subsequent career path!
I did lots of different things at Start Afresh – from fixing structures on-orchards to writing up reports and presentations to running lab projects. Loved the variety of projects and the laid-back nature of Start Afresh.
I’m now studying for a PhD in Chemistry at Massey University, Detecting trace elements of orchard sprays, and with support from Start Afresh, I obtained a Callaghan scholarship sponsored by Zespri.
Over my 3-month internship at Start Afresh, I worked alongside Sophie Carr-Paterson as a ‘Horticultural Business Innovator’. Our project brief was to develop a business model for ‘the next kiwifruit’; researching a potentially scalable horticulture crop with high profitability. We began by using prior research into food sales prices to narrow down the most profitable horticultural products. We then analysed production, sales and crop characteristic information for each of the products to further narrow down our research. We finished the project by visiting established operations and getting a real-world understanding of the feasibility of our idea. The broad scope of the project taught us a lot about the wider horticulture industry and meant we often had to thing outside the box to get the information we needed.
I’m now working at Fonterra as a Business Graduate. The graduate programme sees me working in 4 different areas of the Co-op over 2 years. My current role is supporting the Ingredients Portfolio Management team with Supply & Demand forecasting and insights into global dairy market dynamics.
My Summer research project at Start Afresh helped me develop a range of skills, from market research and budgeting to communicating with stakeholders. I use these skills everyday in my new role and am hugely grateful for my time at Start Afresh.
Working at Start Afresh was a privilege. I mainly conducted experiments measuring kiwifruit respiration rates in response to a range of temperatures. This was carried out to determine the best time to pick the kiwifruit as well as the most favorable temperature for kiwifruit storage.
Alongside this, I helped out with both orchard and office work. Dave and Sally taught me many skills around the maintenance of orchards and the systems kiwifruit go through pre- and post-harvest. In the space of 6 months, I went from having a very limited knowledge of the kiwifruit sector to having a comprehensive understanding of all the processes.
Start Afresh is an exceptional company that thoroughly enjoyed working in. I was only a part of the team for 6 months, as I planned to join the Army. Currently I am posted to Burnham camp as an Emergency Responder.
My time at Start Afresh was based around researching high value horticulture. This encompassed various tasks, however we were ultimately looking to find crops in which we could intensify production and create higher returns for the industry.
Through the guidance of the Start Afresh team and industry professionals, I was able to gain a broader understanding of how the horticulture industry operates, and where there could be space for new opportunities to flourish.
At Start Afresh I gained a practical understanding of the horticulture industry, which was inclusive to visiting different fruit orchards, berry farms and pack houses. It was an awesome experience. I had a fantastic summer in the sunny Bay Of Plenty and recommend the amazing experience that I had working at Start Afresh to others.
I am currently participating in the Graduate Programme at Mainfreight in Christchurch, where I am furthering my knowledge on how the supply chain of New Zealand operates.
After completion of my PhD at University of Auckland and Postdoc research works at Massey University, I joined Start Afresh as a research engineer. My works focused on the cooling performance of Refrigerated shipping containers with different pallet stacking layouts. This involved measuring temperature profiles while the container was operating in order to develop best-practice operating guidelines.
Though the time I worked at Start Afresh was short, the work I did was really interesting and I had an opportunity to broaden my view of the kiwifruit industry and to meet many wonderful people including David, Sally and Pranoy.
Sadly, I left Start Afresh in 2018 to face another challenge in high-tech area and joined Dotterel Technologies(www.dotterel.com), a small start-up company dedicated to solve noise problems in UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle, also known as drones). The company is developing lower noise propulsion systems and aerial audio systems for UAV.
I thoroughly enjoyed my time working at Start Afresh. While at Start Afresh, my project involved storing red kiwifruit at various storage conditions and then conduct a sensory taste panel to see how the storage conditions affected the ripening and taste of the fruit. Start Afresh taught me the importance of flexibility and prioritising. Covid-19 hit during my time there, and the team were required to collect and test kiwifruit prior to harvesting, complete our own projects as well as manage the challenges that Covid-19 brought.
I currently work as a Quality Coordinator at Pic’s Peanut Butter. We are currently working towards our BRCGS certificate which involves creating and updating procedures and protocols to increase our food safety standards. Working towards this standard is a lot of work and requires me to prioritise tasks and be flexible, moving between tasks to simultaneous finish the work, which are all skills I learnt from working at Start Afresh.