country Paul Paynter


A Trusted Name

From apple seed to apple industry

When Samuel Marsden planted the first apple trees in Kerikeri, New Zealand, in 1819, few could have expected that they would bear the first fruit of what is now one of New Zealand’s key industries.

Thanks to the country’s unique climate and versatile soils, Marsden’s trees flourished and orchardists quickly saw the potential for a commercial crop. This included the Paynter family, who began growing apples in Stoke, Nelson, just 43 years after the first ever tree was planted. By the early 1900s, they moved to Hawke’s Bay where the family continues to grow apples and stone fruit to this day.

Growing fresh produce into a household name
As offshore demand for New Zealand apples grew over the next few decades, so did the Paynter family’s aspirations. In 1974, John Paynter, a fourth-generation grower, established the Yummy Fruit Company to differentiate his high-quality and tasty apples from the competition. Today, John and his son, Paul, own and manage over 500 hectares of orchards with 18 different apple varieties and pack an average of 20,000 tons of apples per year – earning a place as a trusted household name to many.

Farming for the next generation
The Paynter family are committed to upholding their role as stewards of the land to not only preserve our planet’s health for future generations, but the family business, too. “It’s a generational business. I grew up playing in the orchard and eating the fruit off the trees, and my kids will do the same – so sustainability is really important for us,” says Paul.

Paul recognises the vital role played by UPL in maintaining Paynter’s legacy for over 20 years. One of the key inputs Yummy uses is Du-Wett, a unique super-spreader that reduces water usage, improves work rate, and minimises residue by enhancing the spread of fungicides, insecticides, plant growth regulators and nutrients. And it’s not just the inputs, Paul also values the close and long-standing relationship they’ve built with UPL’s sales manager. This on-the-ground support and guidance are part of our commitment to the farming communities feeding the world.

The Yummy Fruit Company is also firmly rooted at the heart of their rural community. This can be seen in their kids’ apple sticker collection program, which has supplied 5 million dollars’ worth of sports equipment to schools, while Yummy’s participation in New Zealand’s Recognised Seasonal Employee scheme is empowering entrepreneurialism among Pacific Islanders between their time working in the Orchard.

Innovation from tree to table
Despite his orchard’s 160-year history, Paul is always ready to embrace new technology and is exploring how digitalisation can reduce prices, increase efficacy and cut waste. And, as he told us, he’s also looking forward to working with UPL to further ensure he can continue the Paynter legacy of nurturing good apples, good land and good partnerships. We’re proud to be a part of the continuing Paynter legacy.