Kāuta is a one-stop search engine for all Māori kai businesses across all regions of Aotearoa and they’re launching phase one of their unique platform.

Free to use for both customer and supplier, Kāuta Limited is funded by Rewi Spraggon (Ngati Hine, Te Waiohua, Te Kawerau a Maki, Ngati Maniapoto) and Grant Kitchen (Tuwharetoa – Ngati Hikairo, Ngati Kahungunu ki Pukehou), and offers an easy and intuitive search engine for anyone looking for kai in just a few clicks. You can filter search results by a physical store that you can visit or by suppliers which have an online store that you can purchase for delivery. 

An innovative and Māori-led business in the agrifood sector, borne out of Manawatū, Kāuta has a goal to help elevate small businesses and producers and create meaningful connections with food.  

Grant Kitchen says, “our ethos is to create and build connections while encouraging partnerships and innovation. Ultimately, we want to make it easier for Marae’s Chefs and restaurants to source good food locally, simultaneously connecting users to the makers.”   

Born out of Manawatū, Kāuta joins a world class agrifood sector in the region, with world renown companies and a unique cluster of scientists, researchers, engineers and start up incubators. All innovators, do’ers and makers who are working together for the future of food. 

Kāuta follow three core values across their business, which enables registrations from all verified Māori businesses. 

Manaakitanga – to support and celebrate Māori food and beverage suppliers 

Kaitiakitanga – business practices and ethics are kaupapa driven and align to the Māori world view of sustainability 

Kotahitanga – supporting the movement towards kai motuhake (food sovereignty) for Aotearoa 

Kat Wade, Māori Business Growth Advisor at the Central Economic Development Agency says Kāuta aligns well in achieving the ‘big goals’ for the region. 

“Kāuta are a culturally innovative business who fit well into the regions strong agrifood sector. Their work not just on business innovation, but also on sustainability aligns them well with the region’s vision to be a world leading agrifood hub,” Wade says. 

Manawatū is widely known as the epicentre for agrifood innovation and was the first region in Aotearoa to develop an Agritech strategy. Recognised as a leading agrihub, Manawatū is home to three crown research institutes, along with Aotearoa’s FoodHQ, Finistere Ventures, Sprout Agritech, Fonterra R&D, AgResearch, and more.   

With over 3,900 scientists and researchers based in the city, and an impressive food and beverage scene to rival major cities, Manawatū is considered a quiet achiever when it comes to all things food, so it’s not surprising that Kāuta was created here. 

Likewise, Kāuta’s vision is to encourage a strong and sustainable Māori supply chain, where farmers and producers are recognised for their mahi by a lasting and sustainable demand for their goods. Where the customs and heritage of Aotearoa stand proudly on the world stage alongside other great culinary nations and where the youth are inspired to follow this path that their ancestors have carved. 

Future-proofed to support Māori tourism, events, catering and marae papakāinga, Kāuta are keen to take their platform nationally and are encouraging businesses to get on board for phase one of their launch. 

If you’re a Māori verified business in the food and beverage sector, or restaurant looking for an innovative way to connect to new customers, you can register via their website here at https://kauta.co.nz/register  

Kāuta Limited are a CEDA-supported business who receive advice and valuable connections from CEDA’s team. These specialists work closely with local businesses providing specialist support, guidance and connections to capability training and opportunities. Our team also helps businesses like Kāuta to connect to organisations like Talent Central for staff and Central Skills Hub for industry tools and resources to help them succeed. 

For more information about Kāuta, visit their website.

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