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Dunedin City Council – Kaunihera-a-rohe o Otepoti

With such a volume of rural land, primary industry is an important contributor to Dunedin’s economy.

Primary industries include agriculture, forestry and commercial fishing and the sector collectively contributes about $102m GDP to Dunedin’s economy and accounts for one in every 30 full-time equivalent positions.

A snapshot of Dunedin’s Primary Industry sector

What the economist say: "The scale of the primary production sector’s contribution to Otago Region’s employment, GDP, and businesses is within three to four percent range over the last 10 years. In terms of growth, employment and businesses in the sector declined while GDP increased slowly over the last 10 years. Slow economic expansion is partly due to a slow rise in labour productivity, 1.6 percent across the primary production sector in the City. The decline in businesses mirrors regional and national trend."

Primary industry projects

Projects led and/or supported by the Economic Development Unit include:

  • growDunedin – a website providing quality soil and climate information to the rural sector
  • Beef + Lamb Monitor Farm Programme – the Unit supports an additional monitor farm field day in the Dunedin area
  • Southern Wood Council – representing the sector from the Waitaki south, the council is an independent group made up of major forestry companies, wood processing and manufacturing companies, port authorities and the economic development agencies of local councils. Its goal is to promote, encourage and coordinate sustainable economic development of the forest products industry in the Otago and Southland regions
  • Dunedin Rural Development – a farm interest group that aims to increase and support Dunedin’s farming community
  • Dunedin Rural Liaison Group – a Civil Defence-focused group.

How can we help your Primary Industry business?

We can help with:

  • Business planning
  • Advocacy with other Council departments
  • Support to find and retain skilled staff.

To find out more about the Primary Industry and support for your business contact, Ross Grey on 03 474 3509,

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