Several hundred people turned out onto the streets of Hastings recently to support Hawke's Bay apple growers in a protest against to ENZA's proposed levy.

The apple and pear export board is set to loose its monopoly this year but first has to find the funds to pay off a debt amounting to NZ$54m (US$21.9m). It recently revealed its plan to pay the debt by collecting a levy on every box of apples and pears picked up from growers.

Aggrieved growers drove tractors from a rally at the Hastings town clock to ENZA's main office where they took part in a peaceful picket.