Food technologists are developing new taewa products that will increase the value and demand for taewa crops. Identifying opportunities requires innovators who constantly think of new ideas and keep ahead of the mainstream market.
Dr Nick Roskruge (Massey University)
Opportunity has to run before the product – you've got to see the opportunity before you actually have the product – so it’s about constantly being ahead of the game if possible, and it may be as simple as… I mean, you've got people up on the East Coast producing a kūmara wine from the skin. It’s about those sorts of innovations that just keep them one step ahead of the mainstream and create that opportunity. So that’s the uniqueness of what can be done, and that is where you need those innovative thinkers that can sort of think just slightly outside of the square and say, “What can we do here?”
If you go to Peru, there is 3,000 sort of variety of potatoes in all shapes, colours and everything. Some of them look like bunches of grapes but you will see chippies that are all sorts of colours, just natural colours, and that is just part of their everyday sort of shop purchases. You don't see them here at all. So that is the sort of the extent of the opportunities that could be out there.
We've got to put ourselves in context, and we are quite a small country, our production is reasonably small. The area we could put into production is reasonably small compared to overseas, so how do we get the best value out of what is produced?
Hamuera (Joe) McLeod