Thursday, 25 August 2022
EMBARGOED UNTIL 12NOON SATURDAY, 27 AUGUST 2022
UK Trade Minister to visit low-carbon dairy processor Miraka
during NZ visit
Taupō dairy processing business, Miraka, which has one of the lowest carbon footprints in the world, will host the United Kingdom Secretary of State for International Trade, the Right Honourable Anne-Marie Trevelyan MP during the Minister’s first visit to Aotearoa New Zealand.
Chairman of Miraka, Kingi Smiler said it was an honour for Miraka to host a senior UK government minister with responsibility for trade and trade relationships.
“Minister Trevelyan is the most senior UK government minister to visit New Zealand in a very long time, particularly since the COVID pandemic began in 2020.
We are delighted that the Minister is visiting our geothermally powered manufacturing plant to learn about our business and in particular, how we apply Te Ao Māori principles in operating our business, engaging with people and exercising kaitiakitanga; caring for our taiao – the natural environment and resources, as best we can.”
Minister Trevelyan will arrive in the region on Saturday and will be welcomed at a pōwhiri at Oruanui Marae, north of Taupō.
Minister Trevelyan signed the ground-breaking New Zealand / UK Free Trade Agreement in London in February this year together with New Zealand Trade and Export Growth Minister, Hon Damien O’Connor.
The agreement will offer opportunities for both UK and New Zealand companies and includes a Māori Trade and Economic Cooperation chapter that is designed to connect the UK and Māori owned businesses, such as Miraka - and opens opportunities for innovative and climate-friendly trade and investment for both countries.
“The UK/NZ free trade deal is a gold standard agreement,” says Iona Thomas, British High Commissioner to New Zealand.
“It is great for British and New Zealand consumers and businesses and offers significant investment opportunities for both countries.
Trade between the UK and NZ was worth about $5.5 billion in 2019 and the FTA could boost this by hundreds of millions.”
Mr Smiler: “It is our hope that the NZ / UK Free Trade Agreement will provide greater opportunities for Miraka and all New Zealand businesses to access and benefit from the trade and investment opportunities which are envisaged under the agreement.
As one of the largest Māori export businesses in Aotearoa New Zealand, Miraka is pleased to have the opportunity to enter into dialogue on our turangawaewae with the UK Trade Minister during her brief three-day visit.
Miraka has one hundred farmer suppliers within a 120km radius of its Mokai factory which uses renewable ‘green’ geothermal energy. The company is one of the largest businesses in the Taupō District employing 145 staff from 13 different nationalities.
Miraka CEO, Karl Gradon, who started with the business in April, announced last month that the company was looking for new milk supply.
“We are preparing for new growth and looking ahead to the future as our business moves into food service areas and purpose driven brands which value carbon reductions and organisations which champion values and people first.
Taupō District Mayor, David Trewavas, was also delighted to have the UK Trade Minister visit the district.
“It’s great that the Minister is visiting Taupō and I am looking forward to meeting her,” he said.
“It will be an honour to have her visiting some of our marvellous producers and it shows our local businesses, are doing a great job at managing the way they use our natural resources appropriately.
Miraka is a shining example of that, not just in Taupō but for New Zealand as a whole.”
Te Mahau Kingi – Communications Manager
Mobile: +64 21 236 9115
BRITISH HIGH COMMISSION
Damian Kean – Communications Manager
Mobile: +64 21 342 063