We acknowledge the interconnectedness of all living and non-living things and our commitment to Manaakitanga (care for people), Kaitiakitanga (care for our land and environment) and Whanaungatanga (care for the connectivity between people) drives all that we do.
As an organisation, we want to create a sincere integration and appreciation of Māori culture within our Co-operative. We recognise the value this can bring in shaping who we are and the role it plays in celebrating our identity here in Aotearoa New Zealand and globally.
The next step in this journey is to tell our story through the creation of a pou. A pou is a traditional Māori way of telling a story through the art of wood carving. It will be a physical representation of our Co-op and everyone in it, telling the story of our past, our present and our future ambitions, a tangible reminder that our strength and success come from working together and from our connection to Aotearoa New Zealand out into the world.
The pou is being carved by Arekatera ‘Katz’ Maihi, a well-known and accomplished musician, carver and Tā moko artist. Katz went on a two-month journey with us to get to know our Co-op and the people in it so he can create a design that is unique to us. His induction included:
Watch chapter one to see the start of this journey, while in chapter two we travel to the Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei marae to see the rākau (wood) being selected and blessed before beginning its journey to Whakatane to start the carving process.
By the time the pou is complete (Oct 2021) it will be 7 months from Arekatera began his journey with Fonterra. He spent 2 months getting to know and meet farmers and employees around the business, 1 month designing the Pou and precuring the wood and 4 months carving the 8-metre totara log.
The pou is made from an 8-metre totara tree that has been dried for 32 years and was found at the Orākei Marae in Auckland.