Inspiration comes from the people around us who are changing the game. The Bay of Plenty seems to be a magnet for conscious entrepreneurs- young people with a social and ecological conscious who understand that the choices we make have consequences that reach across generations.
We are stoked on the positive feedback we received from our last post. At the core of conscious business are the values we consider integral to the way we live, work, and spend our money.
We wanted to celebrate the surge of creative whanau who are choosing to create their own realities rather than working a 9-5 for someone else. People who are creating stable livelihood opportunities for their friends and families.
To follow up on those core values that we stand by and support, here are our top 10 favorite local (BOP/NZ) businesses. If you haven’t checked them out yet, get into it!
(Listing is in no particular order, we just love them all- better yet, ALL these businesses are Organic!!!)
Click business names to go directly to their website!
At Vitality Organics we LOVE our Kombucha! The fermented tea goodness that makes your body go Ommmmmmmmm. Especially from the Organic Mechanic crew based in Auckland. Not only do they produce one of our all-time favorite kombuchas, but they’re also an amazing crew of conscious young people who changing the world. Through conscious (alcohol-free) parties and events and massive community building gatherings, Organic Mechanic is SO much more than a kombucha business. They’ve got a tribe of bad-ass men and women who are leading our generation to a brighter, more sustainable, inter-connected future.
Staying on the Kombucha train, we’re also masssssive fans of GoodBuzz Booch. Brewed right here in Tauranga, GoodBuzz uses organic ingredients and always keeps our taste buds on their toes. Their wide range of delicious flavours and wacky art work always keeps things interesting. Our favourite is the Feijoa, a beautiful celebration of New Zealands’ much anticipated yearly harvest. Super popular with the kids, and adults too, this BioGro certified Kombucha is available in nearly all major supermarkets in New Zealand!
If you have a sweet tooth, you’re gluten-free, and you’re in the Tauranga area. You’ve GOT to track down Sage and Grace. Besides having the brightest, most welcoming smile at the Tauranga Farmers Market, the beaming personalities behind these cakes make them super special. Decorated with edible flowers and coconut whip, Sage and Grace make their own organic gluten-free flour mix and have an irresistible range of refined-sugar free, plant-based cakes and goodies. Also, Sarah is the QUEEN of waste-free, always encouraging her customers to bring their own containers. She sets the bar high for waste-minimalization. Perfect for any special occasion (and let’s face it, you’re alive, today is pretty damn special). They also cater for weddings and special events!
This place feels like a third home to us in Mount Maunganui (besides our actual home and the VO trailer). Walking into Be Organics, we know we’ll be greeted with a familiar face and a wealth of knowledge on organic foods. Providing the Mount with a wide range of locally grown and New-Zealand sourced fresh and natural goodness, Be Organics is the place to BE if you want to support local and stay up to date with newly released plant-based and organic household must-haves. Their colourful displays and homey vibe make it a place you want to stay and have a yarn. They also have a super-convenient at home delivery service for fresh fruit and veggies, making it SO easy to eat organic (Mount Wholefoods!). Be Organics is also super waste-mindful, and use only paper bags with their delightful logo, Peace, Love, and the Moon 🙂
Shay Lawrence is the mastermind behind CaliWoods. This Auckland-based nature-lover provides New Zealand smoothie fanatics with a range of reusable stainless steel straws, as well as quickly bio-degrading paper straws for single use take-away joints (like us!). This business is fueled by a love for the environment and keeping her clean and green, especially keeping those pesky plastic straws out of the ocean. Their social media calls consumers to be super reflective and mindful about minimizing consumption, rather than switching to eco-friendly and jumping on the bandwagon mindlessly. If you DO drink a smoothie a day (yep, just like us) it’s definitely worth investing in your own reusable straw 🙂
What started as a juice fast range has (much to the liking of Tauranga peeps) expanded to a wildly popular retail range of cold pressed juice infusions. Using only top quality organic ingredients, sourced locally whenever possible, these juices are to die for. We love ‘em because they contain beautiful tea infusions mixed with cold-pressed juice, so their lower in sugar than your average fresh juice. They’re super fresh and wholesome, leaving you feeling light and floaty like you’ve inhaled your weekly quota of greens in one gulp. Nomad has matched the demand for green juices in the Bay with the perfect blend of fruit and veggie goodness.
This business is super close to our hearts, as one of our own crew spends a good chunk of her time with her hands in the soil. Hand Crafted Produce is a family owned and operated organic veggie business based in Te Puna (but relocating to the Kaimais verrrrry soon). HCP grows a range of seasonal greens and taproots, and produces the can’t-live-without-it Fancy As Salad mix (available in organic shops throughout Tauranga and the Mount). Their permaculture ethos and support-local values make their veggies a cornerstone of our diet. They also work with heaps of permaculture and organic horticulture students to help share their wealth of knowledge about soil regeneration (and everything else to do with growing organic). Seriously a community gem- you can catch Brad, Rachel, or James at the Tauranga Farmers Market every Saturday.
Just saying the name my mouth starts salivating. Bu Deli is a Mount-Maunganui based business specializing in vegan cheese and butter- yes- I said it- plant. based. butter. This stuff is off the chain. A perfect blend of macadamia nuts, coconut oil, nutritional yeast and apple cider vinegar, when this stuff came out a few months ago, it’s safe to say the bread consumption of vegans skyrocketed by 300%. It mimics the beautiful melting and saltiness of real butter without any of the guilt or stomach ache of eating it. A perfect step for plant-based eaters in transition, you could probably even use this butter to fool a traditionalist.
Hayden Booker is the man behind V&V, a range of organic nut butters with a special range of butters used to make deliiiiiicious milk-alternatives. These products are super dear to us (and our customers) as we use the V&V Barista Blend for our elixirs and nut butters in our smoothies! V&V is passionate about plant-based eating, and does heaps of social awareness raising about the environmental impacts of the dairy industry in New Zealand. Their take-home nut butters also encourage the average New Zealander to make their own nut-mylks at home and reduce their carbon footprint. Also, a wicked collab with Good Trust, every purchase of their nut-mylk concentrates provides 2 weeks of drinking water for people in Cambodia! Chur!
Last but certainly not least, Kiwi Quinoa will make your jaw drop. With the rise in popularity of quinoa in Western diets in the last 10 years, so has information about over-harvesting, social inequalities in growing regions, and the carbon footprint of important this nutrient-dense grain from South America. Not anymore! This amaaaazing whole-protein delicious staple crop is now grown in New Zealand. The first commercially ready quinoa crop harvested in NZ was in February 2016. After travelling through Peru, Dan and Jaqui of Kiwi Quinoa were inspired to give growing quinoa a go at home. With much success, their organic kiwi-grown quinoa is now available at stockists throughout the country.
* * *
Hooooooly we’ve got some incredible allies in conscious sustainable business! We are SO grateful to be part of a movement in New Zealand towards a more environmentally just economic system. While we’re just scratching the surface of what is possible, we are paving the way for a change in overall consumer values.
What inspires me about this list is the overlap and interconnections! So many of these producers work together and support one another through stocking products, promoting events, or sharing ideas. Recognizing that it is mutually beneficial when we are all thriving together in the conscious business sector, the more organic, waste-minimizing businesses out there, the better for us all 🙂