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About Us

We are an online marketplace where you can discover and buy food directly from small passionate food producers.

 But we are also on a bigger mission - to help change the way people eat.

By making it easier for them to discover, buy and enjoy some of the delicious artisan foods from around New Zealand.

 At the same time we help the small artisan food producers across the country find customers and grow their business.

 We believe that instead of a small number of large food companies there should be a large number of small food companies. We're a bit obsessed with good food and passionate about connecting those that like to eat it with the people that make it.

 We support farmers markets, the small specialist food stores on the high street (much nicer than malls..), the principles of Slow Food (link)

Here's our team.

 

Greig Buckley.

Big cheese, foodie, Providore, Founder and co-owner of Kai

 

Scott Wilson.

Designer, ideas guy, man with a good eye (well two actually, but he can spot good design a mile off)


Catherine Smith

The wordsmith, sounding board, keen observer of human behaviour, and enjoys good honest food.


We also have business partners with significant experience in food technology, production, distribution, marketing and general management in the food and retail sectors.

 


" Kai  will provide a very important portal for food and beverage business, that is currently not available on a one-site stop.

 Our country’s artisan and small businesses are the first and most important stop for the further development of New Zealand’s markets, both local and international, and it is always a struggle for them to find a voice. "Kai” will be perfect, not only helping these businesses to grow, but also for food lovers and food writers to source new and exciting products to write about and use. One of the concepts I have always thought has not been promoted enough is the uniqueness of our food heritage and the depth of food products available and "Kai” should provide channels for the leverage of our New Zealand food.

 I am passionate about New Zealand food and I know that "Kai” will help to ensure everybody, everywhere, who has internet access, will gain a greater understanding and appreciation of our artisan producers and help them to reach potential"

 

Lauraine Jacobs

Food Editor, NZ Listener

Past President of the NZ Guild of Food Writers

Former food editor of Cuisine magazine

Member of the NZ Government Food and Beverage Taskforce 2007                                                 

Lauraines' blog



 


Greig Buckley

Sharing good food, eating and cooking has been part my life since I was a boy growing up in the wilds of the Bays on Auckland’s North Shore. Whether it was picking blackberries off the side of the road, catching eels in the local stream or shucking oysters off the rocks (yes you could safely do that in those days), fishing and scalloping with dad and the uncles at Te Ngaere Bay in Northland  or making muffins with my mum, Anne, if there was food around I wasn’t far behind. I even lobbied to get boys into the cooking classes at my Intermediate school. I ate my way around Asia for four years in the 1980s, didn’t spend nearly long enough eating in Europe or America but learned amazing cooking from Michelle Garnaut in Hong Kong. At last the career in advertising and marketing can be put to good use - to establish Kai where I can bring together producers who love making food from the land and sea in their favourite corners of New Zealand, with people who love to cook and eat.

 

"I think the future of New Zealand is going to be our niche in the world producing beautiful, sustainable food, beer and wine. Inviting visitors around the world to come and see the land where our food is grown, meet the artisans who love producing their food is and taste the difference will give us jobs, pride and an enviable place in the world.”

 

Favourite dish right now:  Asparagus and lemon risotto

First thing I learned to cook:    Bran muffins, then roast lamb

Ingredients I couldn’t live without: Olive oil, salt, fresh herbs

If I had to choose only three cookbooks in my life I’d pick:

The Cook’s Companion by Stephanie Alexander. She is a legend, and it’s great because it is almost local (rather than American or British)

The Complete Asian Cookbook, by the peerless Charmaine Solomon. All you need to know about Asian foods.

Jeremiah Tower’s New American Classics. I just love many of those classic dishes like coleslaw and a good New York cheesecake.

And Stoked by our own Al Brown (just realised I should have a classic NZ food book....)

 

 I’ve found some amazing business partners who share my love of good food and who truly believe in helping artisan food producers create businesses that can support their families and communities and make their food-loving customers happy. We all believe this is the future for new Zealand.

 

Scott Wilson

Designer, ideas guy, man with a good eye (well, two actually, but he can spot good design a mile off). And a gorgeous wife Margie who can cook and bake and set a mean table.

Favourite dish right now: Seared Tuna and stir fried asian greens

First thing I learned to cook: The then kiwi flat staple - Spaghetti Bolognaise

Ingredients I couldn’t live without: Tomatoes, red onion and fish - also a bit of that La Chinata bitter-sweet smoked paprika in the small red can.

If I had to choose only three cookbooks in my life I’d pick: To cook with - James Peterson's 'Essentials of cooking', Jamie Oliver's 'The Naked Chef' and David Herbert's 'The Perfect Cookbook'. The best read - Al Brown's 'Go Fish' 

 

Catherine Smith

The wordsmith, sounding board and keen (or is that mean?) observer of human behaviour. Holds a day job as a writer and editor, and a night job of eating, reading other people’s clever writing and to the odd spot of vege gardening.

 

Favourite dish right now:   anything with broad beans – steamed, pureed, whatever. The little buggers are so much work, you have to enjoy every morsel.

 

First thing I learned to cook:   spaghetti bolognaise. Well it was the Seventies. But have since perfected the ultimate ragu sauce (it’s Marcella Hazan’s actually. Look it up on page 109,The Classic Italian Cookbook, 1973, ed 1981).

 

Ingredients I couldn’t live without:  cheese. Never met one I didn’t like.

 

If I had to choose only three cookbooks in my life I’d pick:

Forgotten Skills of Cooking, Darina Allen (Kyle Cathie, 2009) It made me realise how my mother’s cooking sprang from the deep heritage of Irish country food.

The Complete Book of Gingerbread: traditional gingerbread recipes from around the world, Valerie Barrett (The Apple Press, 1992). The only baking book that ever gets a hammering in my house, every Christmas. By the third batch I’ve re-memorised the recipe and we’re off into production. Her ginger parkin isn’t a patch on my mother’s .

Lee Bailey’s Soup Meals: Main event soups in year round menus, Lee Bailey, Clarkson Potter, 1989. A New Yorker of style, Lee Bailey, made me realise it was hard to beat comfort food made well. Opened my eyes to the pleasures of eating with the seasons and the power of a beautifully dressed table.

 

Usage Ideas
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Use the old standby of pumpkin to make  a big pot of soup, and serve with fresh artisan bread.

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Follow up with the perfect winter crumble - apples, pears or add some frozen berries. Top with vanilla custard.

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Make a warming chicken casserole with sweet winter vegetables

Kai Finder
  Kai NZ Foods Limited
Company Registration 3461931
Address
19D Triton Drive, Albany
P O Box 34008 Birkenhead 0746
Auckland
0800 524 500
help@kai.co.nz
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