Outstanding New Zealand food and drinks to add to your shopping trolley

NZ Life & Leisure celebrates those who harvest, grow and create New Zealand’s outstanding food and drink. Here’s a list of some fantastic artisan food producers to support by adding to your shopping cart.

To the food producers who put such heart, soul and sinew into enterprise, we salute you. We’re inspired by your innovation and stand in awe of the challenges you meet face-to-face to overcome setbacks. Entrepreneurial farmers, breeders, orchardists, growers, foragers, fermenters, bakers, makers and preservers open our eyes to opportunity.

We celebrate the success of these food producers in the 2021 Outstanding NZ Food Producer Awards. Your products are the best in their fields – there to be savoured and devoured with pride. Enjoy.


Baron Hasselhoff’s

Best known for their epic stories of taste adventures. Artisan chocolate maker Baron Hasselhoff’s, which won five medals this year, always brings flavour to the mouth party. Located in sweet little Berhampore, Wellington. Ethically sourced cacao, thoughtful packaging and a lot of love make these premium craft bars, truffles and brittle an unforgettable experience. baronhasselhoffs.co.nz

Foundry Fine Craft Chocolate

Using only single-origin cacao beans and organic sugar, Foundry Chocolate were thrilled to have their latest release — Semuliki Forest, Uganda — awarded gold, alongside an additional gold and silver medal. Foundry celebrate and accentuate the remarkable personalities of the world’s finest cacao, by crafting and ageing micro-batches of bean-to-bar chocolate from scratch. foundrychocolate.co.nz

Forty Thieves

Crafting healthy and delicious nut butters has always been the goal for this family-owned brand. Both SuperFood Butters won a silver medal, a true testament to that. “Could eat this straight from the jar!” one judge said, which Forty Thieves couldn’t agree with more. Find at select New World, PAK’nSAVE and supermarkets, or fortythieves.co.nz


The Ruby Chocolate, Pistachios & Raspberries Bar offers a completely new chocolate experience. It’s as delicious as it is beautiful, with a unique taste that blends ruby chocolate, sour berries and crunchy nuts. The Reviakin family carefully handcrafts its chocolate in Hamilton with the best ingredients and without artificial flavours or colours. fruney.co.nz

Handcrafted by Loaf

Loaf’s mission is to produce what customers would happily pass off as their own. Their Salted Caramel Brownie Balls are truffle-like versions of their best-selling brownie, also available in Raspberry Compote and Hazelnut Ganache. Perfect for a snack, evening treat or the crowning glory of any grazing platter. Available in supermarkets or at loafshop.co.nz

Kohkoz Real Lebanese Cuisine

Sharing the authentic flavours and colourful heritage of Lebanese cuisine with Kiwis is something Kohkoz Real Lebanese Cuisine has always been passionate about. Its award-winning range includes Traditional Hummus (which won gold), Smoky Baba Ghanoush, Golden Falafel and For the Love of Garlic — a smooth, creamy traditional Lebanese garlic dip. Shop online at kohkoz.co.nz

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Little Bird Organics

Little Bird Organics has hand mixed, scooped and dehydrated its Cacao Raspberry Macaroons for more than 10 years. It’s the combination of rich cacao and raspberry mixed with chewy coconut which makes them so delicious. Indulgently plant-based, gluten-free and refined cane sugar-free. Available in supermarkets and online at littlebirdorganics.co.nz

Manawa Honey NZ

Honey from the heart of Te Urewera forest, the homeland of their tribe, Tūhoe. Manawa Honey sustains its people with jobs and good health while keeping bees for the good of our planet. International award-winning honeys include Mānuka, Rewarewa, Tāwari and Pua-ā-Tāne Wild Forest. Available at most Countdown stores or at manawahoney.co.nz

Mason Brothers’ Honey

For more than 10 years Daniel and Matthew Mason have shared a passion for bees and New Zealand’s great outdoors. Their award-winning Native Bush Honey is foraged by their bees around the Manawatū and is produced by the brothers with the bees, people and planet in mind. Available at masonbrothershoney.com

Molly Woppy

Molly Woppy bake crafted goods that bring people joy. Sharing the yummiest, ethically, and locally sourced ingredients in simple honest recipes. Food that’s so good, you can’t help but share the love. Because a little bit of what you love brings a smile to your dial. mollywoppy.co.nz

Proper Crisps

Introducing Proper Crackerbreads, Danish-inspired seeded crackers crafted to the ideal thickness before being baked. Dairy, yeast and sugar-free, the Nelson-based team loves this simplicity. Proper Pineapple Salsa Tortilla Chips, inspired by Mexican salsa, combine pineapple, mango and jalapeño for flavour that is sweet, salty and a little spicy. Follow on Facebook or Instagram (@propercrisps). propercrisps.co.nz

Rutherford and Meyer

Celebrating New Zealand has always been a part of what Wellington-based company Rutherford and Meyer embody. Their award-winning Love Local Oat Crackers range celebrates ingredients from local producers, all grown with love and care. For more information, visit Facebook or Instagram (@rutherfordandmeyer). Available in supermarkets or at rutherfordandmeyer.co.nz

Superseed Crackers

Crafting artisan “seed-only” crackers, Superseed Crackers deliver on nutrition without compromising on taste. Made in Wellington by Nikki van de Laar and her team, their unique-tasting Lemon & Poppyseed Crackers combine poppyseeds with the tang and zest of New Zealand lemons. Available in speciality stores or at superseedcrackers.co.nz

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Sweetree Honey

Sweetree Honey celebrates where bees have worked their magic with delicious and nutritious raw honey and bee pollen from specific locations. From bee-husbandry to harvesting, processing and packing, every effort is made to maintain the honey’s natural properties, while taking care of our bees and the environment along the way. sweetreehoney.co.nz

Well & Truly Artisan Pantry

Wholesome, nutritious, gluten-free goodness best describes all that is handcrafted by the team at Well & Truly. Macadamia Gold Gourmet Granola is one of six silver medals awarded this year alone. A testament to the mantra of simple made special. Find your local stockist at wellandtruly.nz


Chatham Island Food Co

Chatham Island seafood goes beyond just flavour and texture — it has that indefinable thing that captures the spirit of place. Chatham Island Food Co deliver this bounty and their award-winning Chatham Blue™ to the doors of foodies NZ wide. Premium quality, sustainably sourced and available at chathamislandfood.com

High Country Salmon

This boutique 100% New Zealand family-owned salmon farm grows, harvests, processes and dispatches salmon on-site in the glacial waters of the hydro canals near Twizel. The gold-medal winning Gravadlax is cured with dill, mustard seeds and vodka, resulting in a ready-to-eat salmon with velvety texture. Available at highcountrysalmon.co.nz


Friendly Fantail

Lovingly handmade in rural Canterbury, Friendly Fantail’s Organic Turmeric Latte spice mix makes a delicious, healthy alternative to tea and coffee and is packed with goodness. Perfect for gluten-free, sugar-free, caffeine-free, dairy-free, organic, vegetarian, vegan and paleo diets — or anyone wanting a super yummy, healthy drink. Available in speciality stores and at friendlyfantail.co.nz

Pete’s Natural

Based in Motueka, Pete’s Natural prides itself in providing healthy, natural sodas made from New Zealand-grown fruit. Using local, spray-free, juicy lemons, their award-winning lemonade is a refreshing, delicious, traditionally brewed beverage. Another bonus is that it contains 30-50 per cent less sugar than other leading brands. Available nationwide or at petesnatural.co.nz

Raglan Food Co

Their award-winning Probiotic Drinking Kefir comes in four flavours, each with different health benefits to get you through the day. Packed with live probiotics and vitamin C, your gut (and taste buds) will thank you. Pour it into a glass, or drink straight from the bottle for a daily dose of plant-based goodness. raglanfoodco.com

The Wild Fermentary

Kelli and Jen from the award-winning Clevedon Fermentary are back, handcrafting innovative wild ferments that are good for our health and the health of our planet. Find their new Kefir Soda flavours and gold-medal Smoky Kāpeti (kraut inspired by the land and traditions of Aotearoa) in speciality stores and online at thewildfermentary.co.nz

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Appleby Farms

The team at Appleby Farms is passionate about producing great-tasting ice cream, which scooped up two gold, three silver and two bronze medals. They are thrilled with this year’s awards and look forward to sharing their ice creams with you at their fabulous scooping locations and various supermarkets around the country. Enjoy! applebyfarms.co.nz

Bellefield Butter Co

Bellefield has been making cultured butter and traditional dairy products in the Waikato for almost four years. Its Cultured Butter is an award-winning fermented butter and tastes delicious with lactic notes and creamy texture, lower in lactose than standard butters. Bellefield’s Karengo Seaweed Butter also won silver in this year’s awards. bellefield.co.nz

PURE New Zealand Ice Cream

This Wānaka-based company believes in purity, provenance and sustainability — meaning all of its flavours are intense and original. Natural ingredients are carefully selected, ranging from flaky Marlborough sea salt to 72% Belgian Callebaut chocolate. So you can be sure that only the finest produce available is used to handcraft your serve of PURE deliciousness. purenzicecream.com


Homegrown Butcher, Deli & Pantry

Say hello to this year’s Supreme Champions. Dion & Ali, together with their farm and butchery teams, naturally farm and ethically raise gender and breed-specific beef, lamb & pork for their retail butchery in Masterton and online store nationwide. homegrownbutchery.online

Olliff Farm

Olliff Farm have brought back the wholesome, delicious experience of a ‘backyard egg’ through ground-breaking farming methods. Farming micro-flocks in ‘uniquely designed moveable coops’ brings nutrient dense, flavoursome eggs — like no other. Servicing high-end restaurants and cafes, their multi award-winning premium pasture eggs are available online and at selected retail outlets. ollifffarm.co.nz

Premium Game

Based in Marlborough, Premium Game has earned a reputation as New Zealand’s leading supplier of wild game meat. Like all of their products, their award-winning 21 Day Aged Venison is nutrient dense, full of flavour and naturally free from added hormones and antibiotics. Available at supermarkets and speciality stores, or at premiumgame.co.nz

Zaroa NZ

Zaroa NZ is a start-up artisan meat company creating unique award-winning products from New Zealand beef, lamb and venison in Kaipara, Auckland. Their gold-medal winning Pohutukawa Smoked Fermented Venison Savernaccio is a moreish delicacy with rich, earthy tones that melts in your mouth. Available at Farro, Gault’s Deli and zaroa.nz

Click here for a full list of 2021 medal winners.

NZ Life and Leisure This article first appeared in NZ Life & Leisure Magazine.
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