The East Coast’s flourishing mānuka honey industry is now ready to grow sales both nationally and internationally, with the opening of a state-of-the-art extraction facility in Te Araroa.

This important milestone is the result of a partnership between Nāti Growth, Trust Tairāwhiti and Whetumatarau B45B. The multi-year project is supported by many other local organisations, the government, and the communities of the East Coast.

The aim is to sustainably develop the mānuka industry and open up greater economic opportunities for beekeepers, whānau, iwi and hapū across the rohe.

The total project cost was over $5 million. Twenty percent of the funding was a direct investment by Trust Tairāwhiti. Kānoa – Regional Economic Development & Investment Unit provided a $2 million loan, with the balance coming from Nāti Growth.

“The Porou Miere facility brings together Ngati Porou, landowners and local apiculture businesses across the mānuka value chain. It will help provide greater regional returns for the sector, sustainable jobs and training opportunities, and has the support of the community. For all these reasons, it is an important project for Trust Tairāwhiti to invest in.”


Sarah Homer, Commercial Manager

Quality and control

The 1,000 square metre Porou Miere facility is centrally located in the heart of the East Coast. It houses a state-of-the-art extraction line, along with a large storage area.

In the past, the expansion of the honey industry was limited by the remoteness of the region, with boxes from hives across the East Coast transported to Gisborne for extraction.

Now, local beekeepers have control every step of the way. Once they’ve harvested their hives, they can take their product to Porou Miere for processing. This includes ensuring all the quality control requirements and certifications are completed.

By extracting honey closer to the source, the whole process is also more time-efficient and cost-effective.


Creating local jobs

Nāti Growth is the economic and wealth generation arm of Te Runanganui o Ngati Porou. With more than 75 years of beekeeping experience across the team, they are well placed to train and develop a local workforce.

The Porou Miere facility has already created a number of new jobs. As well as supporting established apiarists, it will also provide opportunities for new people to enter the industry and unlock more of the East Coast’s potential.


Developing a global brand

Wild mānuka grows across the East Coast region, free from urbanisation. Ngati Porou mānuka honey is a premium UMF-certified mono-floral honey with a distinctive flavour and unique properties.

With the new extraction facility fully operational, Nāti Growth plans to develop a vertically integrated honey business, from the land to the brand. They are building awareness of the Ngati Porou honey brand, and establishing long-term supply chains in the domestic and export markets.


Approx. total investment by the Trust, Kānoa and Nāti Growth.

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