New Govt Means Busy Year Ahead

I’m picking 2018 to be the busiest year in the food and grocery sector for some time. That’s mainly because we’ve got a new government with new policies, new ministers, and new approaches. During the election campaign, and even before it, the parties that make up the...

On the Lookout for Market Opportunities

The NZ Food & Grocery Council is always on the lookout for ways to create opportunities for member companies and the wider food sector, either in our domestic market or in an export market. One way we do this is by helping them make connections with supermarket...

Food for Thought in Obesity Fight

Everyone agrees New Zealand’s rate of obesity remains a real concern. The New Zealand Health Survey 2015/16 shows that 32 per cent of people over 15, and 11 per cent of children were obese. Of those, 47 per cent of Maori adults, 15 per cent of Maori children, 67 per...

Call to Label Added Sugars Overlooks Science

In the past couple of days, lobby group Consumer NZ and the Dental Association have called on the governments of New Zealand and Australia to legislate for new food labels that list added sugars. Making sure people know how much sugar is in packaged foods is a great...

Putting FIZZ Under Scrutiny

Claims that a tax on sugary drinks is likely to have “a number of benefits” for the population have been shot down by an analysis of available evidence. The claims of benefits of a tax included: increased cost of sugary drinks, cheaper bottled water and zero sugar...

Public Money Spent on Poor Research

In the nearly nine years I’ve led the Food and Grocery Council, I’ve become increasingly concerned about the quality of some academic research being published about the food industry. I’m sure we’d get better outcomes if there were clearer lines between what’s good...

Joint Approach Needed on Food Literacy

Harvard University Dining is big business. The self-sustaining department serves 25,000 meals a day during the academic year and five million annually. It has a staff of 650 and annual foodservice revenue of nearly NZ$90 million. But it’s more than just big business....

Using Home Cooking to Fight Obesity

I was sorting through some old boxes of books recently when I came across my Home Economics book from school, or as it used to be called “Manual Training”. I think it was about Form 1 (today’s Year 7 equivalent). And the cover page? ‘Cooking Is Fun!’ Inside were many...

Country of Origin Bill is Flawed

Walk into any major supermarket and the first thing you see are bins filled with fresh fruit and vegetables. And they all have stickers or cards on them denoting their country of origin – grapes from California, pineapples from Queensland, Kiwifruit from Te Puke,...

Confronting Rising Retail Crime

The supermarket owner summed it up in two sentences: “I simply wouldn’t operate the store without having the guards, nowadays. This is now a business cost that we just have to factor in.” This had nothing to do with keeping the peace in his car park, or anything like...
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