For more than 50 years, Waitemata Honey, a family-owned business in Auckland, has been supplying the market with honey products ranging from lozenges to clover, multiflora and manuka honey. In a good year, they might sell upwards of 120 tonnes of honey.
Operations Manager Christopher Stuckey views the honey industry as a sustainable project, with bees aiding with our food and livability in environmentally-friendly ways. Stuckey places a lot of value in helping people get the food and nutrition that they require, doing things for the love of the job and the honey rather than chasing money.
“We’re not in it for the money. We’re in it for the love of the job and the love of the product.”
Getting the best out of the honey
Stuckey says that Waitemata Honey is one of New Zealand’s most experienced honey companies. This experience, Stuckey continues, is what allows them to enhance the quality of the honey, placing importance over how the honey is treated and how the whole process is managed, from the beehives right through to packing, labelling, and exporting.
Waitemata Honey works closely with beekeepers, having some of their own while purchasing some honey from other beekeepers. To Stuckey, the good relationships that the business has with suppliers is something that drives the quality standard that Waitemata Honey is after.
Waitemata Honey doesn’t use any artificial fertilisers, and irrigation is also avoided since people like Stuckey are dealing with natural bush and pasture, making a healthy, protected environment a necessity if the disastrous effects of extreme weather events are to be avoided.
Looking forward into the future, Stuckey states that Waitemata Honey is aiming for more expansion and upscaling, whilst continuing to work with people and the land to produce quality products.
Why Waitemata Honey are NZ made
Stuckey says that being New Zealand made provides Waitemata Honey the opportunity to work alongside friends, family, and other locals, building a strong community that Stuckey and his family get to be a part of.
“With being New Zealand made, we can work closely with friends, with family, and with other local businesses. It’s about the community as well, more than just ourselves, and about building up a healthy community and being a part of that.”
Stuckey is also passionate about his role at Waitemata Honey, continuing the work of his family in a job that means a lot to him.
“It’s about getting up to do a job that I really do feel passionate about, and building a business that my family has been in for six decades and counting.”