Sealord, New Zealand's largest seafood company, has been allocated 180 seafood processing visas for overseas workers to fill labor shortages at its wetfish factory in Nelson.

But an acute housing shortage in the area of the factory has the company to accommodate the workers.

Sealord took a NZD 5 million (€3.1 million/$3.2 million) loss at its Nelson wetfish processing factory last hoki season because of a shortage of workers needed to keep the plant fully operational.

The visa allocation is part of the New Zealand government’s new seafood sector agreement that provides 600 visas for seafood process workers in the fishing industry beginning Nov.