News | 7 September 2017

Fledgling food businesses earn their wings

Foodie stars of the future have won free expert mentoring from foodie stars of today with the Wellington Good Food Boost programme winners announced last night.

Good Food Boost winners and mentors
(l-r) James Whyte (Baker Gramercy), Katie Smith (Ritual Tea), Teva Stewart (Common Sense Organics), Amanda Goodman (The Drunken Nanny), Kathryn Robinson (Assignment Group), Rebecca Stewart (Pomegranate Kitchen), Matthew Morrison (All Good Organics), Sarah Adams (Council urban agriculture)

Pomegranate Kitchen is one of four fledgling food businesses around the region about to take part in an eight-week programme receiving support and guidance from leading mentors to give their organisation a boost.

In the capital’s inaugural year, the Good Food Boost programme’s mentors are Shepherd Elliott, co-owner of Ti Kouka café, co-founder of Leeds Street Bakery, and founder of Shepherd restaurant, Kathryn Robinson (The Assignment Group), Teva Stewart (CommonSense Organics), and Richard Shirtcliffe (Coffee Supreme).

Winners also receive a strategy session with the FoodBowl or NZ Food Innovation Network’s FOODPILOT project, and a one-on-one business development session with the Wellington Regional Economic Development Agency (WREDA).

The programme is run by the Sustainable Business Network (SBN). This year, Wellington City Council is partnering with SBN to bring it to Wellington, with support from Le Cordon Bleu and WREDA.

SBN Wellington Regional Coordinator Laurie Foon is the project manager, and proud to be involved with the programme.

“These businesses all tick the box as far as meeting our definition of a good food business by using locally sourced produce, being innovative, creative, sustainable, healthy, and culturally connected,” she says. “We know that with a bit of support they will add to Wellington’s foodie destination reputation and help contribute to its economy, its multi-cultural fabric, and vibrant vibe.”

The Good Food Boost programme winners are:

  • Pomegranate Kitchen: Middle Eastern food prepared for catering and lunch delivery by cooks from a refugee background
  • The Drunken Nanny: Lush fresh soft goats cheeses farmed in the Wairarapa
  • Baker Gramercy: Handcrafted fermented breads made from local grains, and artisan pastries
  • Ritual Tea: A range of hand-blended local, organic and Fairtrade leaf teas