While new businesses are opening in Dannevirke there's one shop that is moving off High St, ending a 36-year presence there.

Healthnuts, owned by Kaylene and John Kani, has relocated to Barraud St into the Saigon Restaurant building and what was the Masonic Hotel.

The shop has taken over what was the TAB bar.

While setting up within a hotel might be an usual venue for a speciality health store, for Kaylene Kani it is the perfect spot.


The store is bright and sunny, beautifully set out and there is plenty of parking in the vicinity.

The move came about through the owners deciding to sell Healthnuts' High St premises so Kani was able to negotiate with the Saigon owners for shop space.

"The Saigon owners were very helpful. I wouldn't have been able to carry on," Kani said.

"By opening Healthnuts here we've also given a lift to this end of the Saigon building."

Healthnuts was established 36 years ago by Joan Warburton and Daphne Miller.

Six years ago Kani bought the business.

Moving into Barraud St is the biggest change to the business since that time.

"A lot of people thought we were closing not relocating, so they are happy to visit our new shop," Kani said.


She is passionate about the store and the natural health products it can supply.

"Our Harker Herbals range would be our most popular products, but they are not just normal products but are based on Rongoā Māori, or traditional healing."

These New Zealand-made products cover a wide range of health issues.

"If you are Māori you were born into natural medicine because that is how we were healed when we were young."

Kani said, over the years, many of these ways of herbal and natural healing became lost but they were starting to come back.

"Natural medicine is growing and there are many companies making these products.


"We take time to research the products we sell to make sure they contain the amount of natural elements that they say they do, that they live up to their labels. Some products on the market use fillers."

Kani says the majority of the health products Healthnuts sell are New Zealand made.

One exception is the Australian-made Sukin skincare range which has a big following.

Healthnuts also has an extensive range of organic products, from flours to lentils, nuts and spices.

There is also a range of essential oils produced in the Pohangina Valley.

"We stock a little of everything and if we don't have it in stock we will order it in," Kani said.


Since moving to Barraud St, Kani says there have been plenty of customers through the door.

"We've been very busy and every day is different."