Story: Farmer and grower organisations

Page 4. Māori farmers

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There are few organisations that represent Māori farmers and growers. The communal ownership and forced dispossession of much Māori land has had a profound impact on the way the land is managed and administered.

Little land was still in Māori ownership in 1953, when the Maori Affairs Act and Maori Trustee Act were passed. The Māori Trust Office (Te Tari i te Kaitiaki Māori) and the Māori Trustee were charged with administering Māori land that lay unproductive. Specific national Māori farmer and grower organisations did not develop. However, in some areas there are organisations at iwi (tribal) level.

National Māori Vegetable Growers Collective

Tāhuri Whenua (National Māori Vegetable Growers Collective) was established in 2004. It provides Māori growers with information on the horticulture industry, is involved in research and development, and finds funding for business development. The organisation is also involved in joint projects with Crown research institutes and New Zealand universities that aim to improve the performance of traditional Māori crops.

Māori Organics Authority

Te Waka Kai Ora (Māori Organics Authority) promotes the use of traditional Māori values and methods for organic food production. It certifies produce grown according to international organic standards and Māori tikanga (protocol).

How to cite this page:

Willie Smith and Steven Kelly, 'Farmer and grower organisations - Māori farmers', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 18 April 2024)

Story by Willie Smith and Steven Kelly, published 24 Nov 2008, reviewed & revised 30 Nov 2023