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Choose Manawatū – a new initiative

We’ve now heard what the next stage of restarting economy will look like under Level 2, when it comes. If you’re like me, you’ll be desperately craving all the things you used to do before COVID-19 hit our shores, so the news that more of our businesses can open up is a relief on a number of levels. I miss my team, my long bike rides, my swim sessions, and meeting up with my friends at my local. It feels like we’re about to take a small step towards some sense of normality.

But what kind of normality to do we want to return to? Was what we had before really that perfect for everyone? We know that we need to get back to business, as quickly and as safely as we can, but I do believe that this can’t be ‘business as usual’, and that we would be overlooking an opportunity to rebuild a more resilient economy that could address some of the problems our society faced pre-COVID-19, and one that can withstand the inevitable future shocks.

One thing I think we all have as a result of lockdown, is a stronger appreciation of our local community, of just how lucky we are to live in Manawatū. Our parks, our local shops, restaurants and businesses, the social connections and the fantastic community and lifestyle here. And we are all now aware that unless we act, some of what we love about our place in New Zealand may change or disappear in the months to come.

While New Zealand will always be a nation that is an open economy, and we value our trading partners and international relationships highly, we do need to consider our own resilience and what is really important to our collective futures.

We know that buying local has a multiplier effect on our local economy, and now it is more important than ever to think consciously about our purchasing decisions, as consumers and as business owners and leaders.

Launched this week, Choose Manawatū is an exciting new initiative brought to you by Manawatū Chamber of Commerce, Palmy BID (Business Improvement District), Feilding & District Promotion, the Central Economic Development Agency (CEDA), in partnership with the Palmerston North City Council (PNCC) and Manawatū District Council.

Together, we’re working to support our business community and encourage our locals to shop, spend and support local. Choose Manawatū provides a digital platform for all businesses across Palmerston North city and Manawatū, to list their services and offerings so we can spread the word and rally our residents to support and spend where it counts.

This is the first small, but important step in a region wide recovery plan. Our local businesses are facing an unparalleled challenge, and one that continues to evolve. We all need to ensure that shopping local isn’t a short-term novelty, and we should also begin to consider how to extend it beyond retail and hospitality to our local supply chains and the procurement processes of central and local government, our large business and anchor institutions.


He waka eke noa,
Linda Stewart

How to list your business

Head to Choose Manawatū to register your business and show what types of services or products you’re offering under Alert Level 3 and 2. Simply fill in the form and upload a photo that shows your business offerings or product. It’s that simple! You can show your support for Choose Manawatū with the toolkit of images and banners so you can show your local support, and encourage others to Choose Manawatu.

For more information:
[email protected]
06 350 1830

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