Food Hui Brings Together Northland Food and Beverage Community


Food Hui Brings Together Northland Food and Beverage Community

Over 100 of Taitokerau Northland’s growers, producers and hospitality businesses came together for the Food & Beverage Industry Hui at Russell’s The Duke of Marlborough this month. The hui, led by regional economic development agency Northland Inc, aimed to provide a platform for the industry
to reconnect following COVID-19 and discuss important topics to promote the depth and range of food and beverage offerings available in the region.

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Justine Stuart, Northland Food and Beverage Ambassador

Northland Inc Food and Beverage Ambassador and event organiser, Justine Stuart, says the event attendance and engagement surpassed expectations.

“It was fantastic to see over 100 of our food and beverage community in the room during the Food Hui, representing many of the region’s iconic hospitality providers, and producers and growers of some of Northland’s best food and beverage products. The strong turnout reflects years of building industry engagement in the sector, which has bought so many together to collaborate on a shared way forward for the industry.”

The Hui incorporated panel discussions from a range of industry representatives, including Lloyd Rooney of Jetson Group (owners of restaurants in Waipu and Whangārei), Peter Jones, Chair of the Northland Wine Growers Association, and Nick Keene owner of Schnappa Rock and president of Hospitality New Zealand, discussing topics ranging from marketing through to staffing and industry collaboration. Guest speakers Joe McLeod and Rewi Spraggon spoke to the industry journey around navigating the incorporation of Te Ao Māori and indigenous ingredients into business and dining experiences, while Hospitality New Zealand CEO Julie White gave a nationwide perspective on the challenges and opportunities in the hospitality space.

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Justine Stuart introduces the panel for one of the morning sessions.

Justine Stuart introduces the panel for one of the morning sessions.


Following the Hui, 25 Taitokerau Northland producers and growers showcased their products, ranging from NIWA’s land based Haku Kingfish grown in Ruakākā, artisan goats milk cheese from Belle Chèvre Creamery in Waipu, and The Taipa Salt Pig’s seawater salt and bottled freshwater products. The region’s vineyards, breweries and distilleries were also well represented at the event. Anton Haagh of The Duke of Malborough and Charlotte’s Kitchen says the event was a great way to bring the industry and producers together, to share ideas and create connections. 

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The Chocolate Barn and Pinenut Bakery display their products at the Producer Showcase.

“With the challenging journey over the past few years, we are always looking to innovate, adapt, and connect with local producers. Ideas shared at the Hui showed we can take control of our own destinies and rebuild the hospo industry in Northland. We are stronger together and there is a shared optimism as we look to the future.”

General Manager of Destination, Tania Burt, says the Food & Beverage Industry Hui was driven by Northland Inc, in collaboration with The Duke, with the intention of creating ongoing conversation and connection across the industry.

“The Food & Beverage Industry Hui provided everyone with a fantastic platform to generate connections and collaboration. The quality and depth of food and beverage experiences across Taitokerau contribute to the region’s visitor industry, and Northland Inc will continue to support the development and promotion of the region’s food and beverage industry.”

The Hui follows the launch of the Northland NZ “Long Lunching, Northland Style” campaign promoting Taitokerau’s food and beverage scene to the domestic visitor market. Further detail on the campaign can be found at: Go Long Lunching (

Food and beverage businesses interested in raising their profile and enhancing the regional offering by listing their business on the Northland Inc website free of charge can create a member profile on and submit a business listing.

Wineries and businesses that have bookable experiences such as tours or hands-on experiences may be eligible to list through Tourism New Zealand on

For further information, please contact:

Hannah Mackay
Communications Specialist
Northland Inc
M: 021 1777 110

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