Little pellets of frozen goodness are being included in food parcels for iwi, marae and emergency workers, thanks to the generosity of a South Taranaki iwi.
Kaitahi Native Superfood Company sent off 400 cartons of frozen smoothy drops, worth almost $50,000, last week.
They went to iwi and marae in the North Island, and to police, fire, ambulance, health and social service workers in Whanganui. Auckland urban marae and the Ngati Kahungunu iwi were among the recipients.
Ngaa Rauru Kiitahi kaiwhakahaere (CEO) Leonie Matoe said the food is definitely needed now.
"This is an expression of care and respect to the essential workers. Our frozen product delivers healthy, refreshing deliciousness, which is just the pick-me-up we all deserve and need right now."
In Whanganui/Taranaki the smoothy drops were distributed through Te Ranga Tupua, the region's iwi pandemic response group.
People receiving the drops were asked how much freezer storage they had. The product was distributed accordingly, with the help of Wanganui Cold Storage and transport by Hall's Group and Provida Foods.
Organising the distribution was good practice for the future of the business, Matoe said.
Kaitahi Superfood smoothy drops are a new and emerging business for the tribe. They were sold in pop-up stores until the level 4 restrictions began, and are also sold in 31 Countdown supermarkets nationwide.
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In late 2018 Kaitahi took out the overall champion of innovation award at the New Zealand Fine Food exhibition. In 2019 it collaborated with Burger Fuel on new menu items, including a vegan hemp shake.
Its frozen smoothy drops are made of native plants, fruits and vegetables.