A tangi has been held in Wairoa for local man Baldy Edwards who died in a workplace tragedy at the town's meatworks last week.

Aged 61 when he died on February 5, he had worked for many years in the town's freezing works, currently owned and run by Affco, and has been a staunch member of the workers' union.

He was also well-known as a stalwart of the Tapuae rugby club, for which he had played and coached, and also stepped-up to administration roles.

Survived by wife Teena, their sons, daughters and grandchildren, his tangi was held at Takitimu Marae and ended on Tuesday with interment at Makeakea Marae.

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Emergency services were called to the Affco plant about 5.30pm last Wednesday and Edwards was pronounced dead at the scene.

The death and its circumstances are being investigated by WorkSafe. It was one of at least six workplace fatalities recorded so far this year.

The number of workplace fatalities last year was more than 50 per cent up on the number for the previous year.