Programme – day one

Here is more detail about the conference programme and brief biographies of presenters and facilitators.Presentations will be uploaded here after the conference.

This page will develop as presentation plans develop to enable conference participants to engage with the conference kaupapa.

Day one, Monday 13 February

9.00: Powhiri Te Puna o te Matauranga Marae

A powhiri is a traditional Maori welcome that sets the scene of our conference. This is most appropriate as achieving sustainable food systems in Northland is only possible with full engagement with Maori. Here is a guideline for NorthTec’s powhiri-protocol.

NorthTec’s Te Puna o te Matauranga marae has recently been refurbished and is now an outstanding example of a whare hui adorned with contemporary Maori design.

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The powhiri will be concluded with a kaputi in the whare kai.

9.50: Introductions and housekeeping

10.00: The North American food movement  experience. Anne Palmer, Johns Hopkins University

Click here for a pdf of Anne’s presentation..

anne-palmer-2Johns Hopkins University acts as a knowledge and communication hub for the 300 or so food policy councils in North America. This places Anne Palmer, as the Program Director, Food Communities and Public Health Program in a unique position to share with us an overview of how food policy councils work and their achievements towards creating sustainable food systems.

Anne is an academic who also rolls her sleeves up and makes thing happen in communities throughout the United States. You can read more about Anne here.

10.40: Accelerating food systems change in Northland. Peter Bruce-Iri, NorthTec and Local Food Northland

Click here for a pdf of Peter’s presentation. Much of his presentation is based on his 2016 research report Pathways to Sustainable Food Systems in Northland.

peter-bruce-large-2009We have been passive participants of the industrial food system. Following Anne’s overview of the food movement in North America, Peter will explore how we can apply those lessons here. This work is based on his recent research, Pathways to Sustainable Food Systems. Peter believes a food policy council could be an important tool to help the transition away from our dependence on industrial food systems. He will pose questions about how we can best set up a food policy council.

Peter is a foundational member of Local Food Northland. He was born and bred in Northland and has lived here most of his life. His first career was in horticulture, initially working on an orchard and bamboo nursery in the Far North before moving back to the Northern Wairoa for more nursery  work and amenity horticulture. After teaching horticulture at NorthTec he then taught management for many years. His research focus is on sustainable food systems.

11.10 Short break

11.15 Designing our food future: a regional food plan? Ruth Marsh, Eco Solutions

Here is a link to Ruth’s presentation.

An important feature of the conference will be the initiation of a regional food plan for Northland. Local Food Northland has identified the Vermont Farm to Plate plan as a good template for a regional plan for Northland. The contexts are quite different, and our plan will be very different, but Vermont is a leading region in the shift to sustainable food systems and probably two decades ahead of us in their organisation.

In this session Ruth will outline the goals and how collectively they create a strong local food system, describe the clusters, and introduce the facilitation process by which we will collectively identify goals for a Northland Regional Food Plan.

Ruth is a Northlander, returning here 15 years ago after a career in sustainable resource management and community development in New Zealand and internationally. She has been part of the localise movement for the last 10 years. She currently manages EcoSolutions – a social enterprise teaching various aspects of sustainable living and supporting zero waste events in schools and the community.


The 25 goals from the Vermont plan have been grouped into six clusters, with a facilitator for each cluster:

  • Environment
  • Food access and health
  • Production
  • Food hubs (including distribution and processing/value add)
  • Policy and research
  • Resources

An additional cluster will identify Kai Maori goals.

This session will also introduce the workshop process.

12.00: Lunch in the whare kai

12.45: Tikanga Māori and sustainability, Rangimarie Price, Naturally Right

rangimarieAchieving a sustainable food system in Northland is only possible with full engagement with Maori. Rangimarie will present the Iwi Leader’s Tikanga Matters model  – providing a exemplary framework for sustainability. She will also highlight some examples of Maori food enterprise.

Trained as an accountant, Rangimarie’s career has spanned strategic and organisational leadership and design, tribal and economic development, education, change management and business ownership across the private and public sector. Rangimarie works with the Taitokerau Iwi Chief Executives’ Consortium and Te Kahu o Taonui, the Iwi Chairs’ Forum for Te Taitokerau.  She is also a trustee for the Taitokerau Education Trust, which is providing equitable access to students to a digitally immersed learning environment that accelerates learning achievement.

1.15: Collaborative tools for a new paradigm – moving from aspirational goals to community outcomes, Jeff Griggs, Local Food Northland

Click here for a pdf of Jeff’s presentation..

Screen Shot 2015-10-18 at 7.02.11 PMSustainable food systems can only happen if we find better ways of organising ourselves. This requires a different sort of communication, stronger manifestations of empathy and respect for one another, the planet and the whole of creation. Leadership will come from everywhere and everyone rather than centrally controlled hierarchical systems.This presentation will also look at how technology can help facilitate this shift.

Jeff Griggs is a foundational member of Local Food Northland. He has lived in Northland for many years and after working for regional and central government has realised that working with community is much more rewarding. He coaches collaborative leadership styles of working and is passionate about community driven initiatives.

He spent 4 months studying the local food movement in North America in 2014 and Sweden and Denmark in 2016 and is now sharing what he learned with others who are interested in re-localising our food. In his spare time he grows avocados and manages Summergarden Daylily nursery.
Here is a link to video of Jeff’s presentation.

1.45: Workshops: Our Regional Food Plan

These workshops are based on the seven clusters identified above.

Part of the workshop process will be “crowdsourcing” goal development using collaborative software.

2.45: Afternoon tea

3.05: Panel: What is our food story? 

We seldom see restaurants and cafes promoting local food. But there are pioneering chefs who are working hard to support local producers. What is our food story, and how can we share it more? This panel features Lloyd Rooney, Lisette Buckle and Professor Barbara Burlingame and is chaired by Clive McKegg.

Thank you to our sponsors.