Tuesday, 16 May 2017 11:34

Malaysian businesses urged to work with Māori business

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Māori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell has told Malaysian businesses they can rely on high quality, fresh and safe food and beverage products from Aotearoa New Zealand.

Speaking at a business matching event to introduce Malaysian businesses to Māori business leaders Mr Flavell says there is a huge untapped potential to work together in the food and beverage sector.

“It’s one we know well, because we have been growing and gathering kai in Aotearoa New Zealand for hundreds of years,” says Mr Flavell.

Mr Flavell, who is on his first Māori business and cultural mission to Malaysia this week, says the Māori business leaders in the delegation were in charge of major operations – with all already exporting successfully overseas, and looking to grow their business in South East Asia.

Representatives of Miraka Ltd, Kahungunu Asset Holding Company, Fonterra, Māori Kiwifruit Growers Forum, Zespri and Watson & Son Ltd are accompanying Mr Flavell on the mission.

“We are here to send a strong message that Māori food and beverage businesses want to be serious partners in the Malaysian market,” says Mr Flavell.

“We are trusted exporters of food products and we place a premium on taste and care for the way food is grown, gathered, packaged, marketed and distributed. We can provide integrity in supply chains and the cultural identity, origins and sustainability of our products.”

What set Māori business apart was its focus on culture, and the key principles that underpin how they do business, says Mr Flavell.

“We measure success not just against financial results but also social, environmental and cultural objectives,” says Mr Flavell.

“When we think of investment we look to those who have gone before us and those yet to be born – we have the long-term game in mind. For us, developing export markets means going to the place we want to sell our products, meeting our partners face to face or as we say ‘kanohi ki te kanohi’.”

Also at the business matching event were five young New Zealand food and business entrepreneurs who are visiting to facilitate trade and build connections between business in New Zealand and South East Asia.

The ASEAN Young Business Leaders Initiative and has been timed to coincide with the Māori business and cultural mission.

| A Beehive release  ||  May 16, 2017   |||