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Where are they now? Kaitaki Class of 2020

Where are they now? Kaitaki Class of 2020

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As we come to the end of our first Eat New Zealand Kaitaki - a collective of next generation food storytellers, we wanted to share an update from the members of our initial cohort, to see where they are now, what they've been up to, what has changed for them over the last year and what they have planned for the future! As the applications roll in this week, we thought hearing some stories from the Class of 2020, may help you understand a little more about what being a part of this epic collective could look like! Remember this is a unique opportunity for a keen young person to develop connections, build their personal brand or business and become part of a group of next generation influencers who are paving the way forward.

APPLICATIONS CLOSE TOMORROW - Friday 6th August at 5pm.

So if you've been thinking about it - or you know someone who you think would be perfect, spread the word and apply now!

We are super grateful to have our major sponsor Our Land and Water National Science Challenge to support the next year of our Eat New Zealand Kaitaki. We look forward to sharing the faces of this new collective with you soon!

I'm interested in becoming an Eat New Zealand Kaitaki!

Expectations of a Kaitaki

We've had a few questions about the expectations of becoming an Eat New Zealand Kaitaki and what sort of time commitment would be involved in being part of this collective. The time expectation is around 5 hrs (max) per month. This includes attending a monthly Kaitaki Kōrero via Zoom and a small number of hours capturing, creating and producing content to be shared through our platforms. This will run over a 12 month calendar, with varying content topics to focus on. As with most groups such as this, you'll get out what you put in and as you'll see from the below experiences - there is heaps to be gained from being part of this unique cohort! Check out the Harvest video below - where our Kaitaki shared stories of their own experience of Harvest season in Aotearoa.

Where are they now?

We caught up with some of our Eat New Zealand Kaitaki Collective from the Class of 2020 - here's what they've been up to...

Nate Smith - Gravity Experience

A message from the man himself from the deep south of Rakiura...

Priyanka Jayarajan - Illustrator

Moving to a new country is never easy, but if there is one thing that helps me connect with a new land and it’s people it is the mutual love and respect for food. I moved to New Zealand a little over two years before becoming part of the Kaitaki and I can say this movement helped me find my people! Food brings a sense of belonging to me and it is so universal no matter how foreign the ingredients or cooking methods can be. I found such a love within the Kaitaki at Eat New Zealand, through reading about and listening to all their many stories and traditions. Not to forget all the wonderful local food heroes I got a chance to interact with and to tell their stories. I am a marketing professional turned visual artist and designer with a focus on all things nature, culture and food. This team has always been supportive of my creations be it photographs, illustrations or design propelling my passion to pursue food storytelling as a career. And to think this is only the beginning…. Hop onto my website: www.dwellsinthepast.com or connect with me on the 'gram @dwellsinthepast

Max Gordy - Chef @grazewinebar

This year being a member of this epic Kaitaki crew has been nothing short of epic! I traveled the country meeting alot of other members and got to cook for everyone at the Food hui that was put on in Wellington. I'm currently under construction of a restaurant/wine bar with my amazing wife. Being surrounded by such passionate people that have gone out and paved there own path has inspired me imensly. I can't wait to be open and welcoming everyone into our new space. Check us out in the mean time and come visit us when we open! @grazewinebar

Nickie Hursthouse - Dietitian

This year I launched my private practice as a dietitian, Nickie Hursthouse Nutrition. I support people to get on top of their gut issues, focus on long term gut health and increase their confidence in the kitchen. I want people to have access to credible information on food and nutrition. To help make this possible, I launched my podcast ALL THINGS FOOD this year. Season 1 has wrapped up with Eat New Zealand’s CEO Angela Clifford featuring in the final episode, as well as fellow Kaitaki, Nate from Gravity Fishing, in episode 8. What an amazing time it has been as part of the Kaitaki Collective with Eat New Zealand. The Food Hui was a highlight and a great opportunity also came about when I interviewed Phoebe and Dave, the visions behind Forrest Hill Community Garden for our month focusing on fruit and vege. Now I am part of the FHCG committee bringing this garden to life. Come Spring we begin!

Find my podcast at www.nickiehursthouse.com/podcasts, follow @nourishwithnickie or get in touch via www.nickiehursthouse.com/contact

Kaitlyn Lamb - Keen Composter

Being a part of the Kaitaki has been one of the best experiences that I have had in my life!! I still remember wondering if I should apply! Something I don’t regret. What I have learnt, and who I have met, has been a pivotal moment in my life! I found my passion which is community engagement and growing food and making compost, through realising our food system is broken and talking to a huge range of people. Since applying, I have connected with many more people beyond the Kaitaki who are interested in what I am too, run compost workshops and have had so many amazing opportunities. I really don’t know what my life would have been like if I hadn’t been accepted as part of the Kaitaki! I feel so much more empowered, knowledgeable about contemporary issues and happy, because I know there are people out there who care about solving the same global issues too! I am now really excited to study at Canterbury University next year, now knowing what sparks my passion!

Zoe Pepper - Food Grower

A year since hooking up with the Kaitaki crew, and it's mind boggling to think what the experience has given me and where I have grown - especially given I had no idea what I was signing up for! It's helped me see a community that deeply cares about the impact they have on other people, environment and nature.

My eyes were opened, I explored new territories of food and I engaged with our community in Taranaki which is every bit as armed to have a kick ass food culture as anywhere. My family spent 4 months travelling - working and learning from organic food growers. People who care so much about giving the best to their land and their community.

It has inspired me to not only consider my personal choices and the impact of where I spend my dollar, but shown me I want to contribute to the future I want to see - communities connected and thriving off the highest quality of food, grown as locally as possible and in a way that is completely harmonious to nature. I'm going to contribute to a waaaay more beautiful way. Why would we settle for anything less than prosperity?

Ashleigh Barrowman - Winemaker

Ashleigh has been continuing to divide her time between all things organic wine: production, distribution and retail. She has been busy releasing more packaging free cuvées under Still Life Wine which is being poured at a growing number of retail outlets and restaurants across the country. She is continuing to promote tap wine as a sustainable alternative to bottled beverages and is excited to see the potential growth in this concept. 2021 harvest was a small in quantity but high in quality vintage and will be releasing new wine come Spring. Ashleigh is also managing her retail store Everyday Wine in Wellington, and proudly represents a number of independent, organic winegrowers from both New Zealand and abroad.

I'm in! Take me to the Kaitaki application!


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