M Y S AY With the foundations already here with two well-established craft breweries in Upper Hutt - Panhead Custom Ales and Kereru – the city has identified an opportunity to grow this industry within its boundaries and create a small cluster of craft breweries. This in turn will promote Upper Hutt as a destination for people to visit our craft breweries. This venture will have all sorts of spinoffs for us as a city…not only are we giving people a reason to come and visit us but hopefully while they are here, they will utilise our cafes and bars in the CBD, book into our accommodation, and visit our many parks and reserves. With Kereru already having a cellar door/ tasting room and Panhead Custom Ales in the process of expanding its brewery FOOD COMPANIES SEEK SALES AND MERCHANTISING HELP 44 NOVEMBER 2016 and establishing a tasting room along with brewery tours in the not-too-distant future, the foundations for the industry in Upper Hutt are sound and established. What’s more, Upper Hutt will have its third craft brewery early in the new year adding to this offering and helping to build that mass that we need to create an industry hub for this burgeoning market. Upper Hutt also sees the value in the employment opportunities that this industry creates within our community. For example, when Panhead started out a little over three years ago, it had just one staff member. Today, that one company alone employs more than 20 workers. Our city presents an abundance of benefits to craft brewery owners and operators. We have spent time actively promoting to the industry, and have recently attended the Brewers Guild Conference in Auckland promoting the Upper Hutt proposition for the second year running. These conferences have given us the opportunity to talk to brewers and owners, and share what we have to offer. The quality of the water in Upper Hutt has been particularly attractive to the two breweries already established here, who have described it as soft and ideal for brewing. The city has availability of space and cheaper commercial rates, yet is easily accessible to main arterial routes for transport options that the greater Wellington region presents. We also have some very proactive landlords who are interested in this industry and want to help make things happen. Our presence at these brewing conferences has been extremely well received and there is a genuine appreciation out there in the brewing community that our city is supportive of their industry and the work they are doing. I am extremely excited at the potential the craft brewing industry presents to our city and, as mentioned earlier, with our third craft brewery opening early in the new year and a number of other interested parties expressing solid interest, the signs are looking good. The council’s economic stimulus policy that was introduced a few years ago also gives us the opportunity to help craft breweries relocate or start-up with some financial assistance. It’s clear that a number of craft breweries are at capacity in their current locations and have grown out of their premises, so this policy has allowed us to showcase our ability to help them expand, relocate or establish here with assistance with retrofitting costs in an existing location in Upper Hutt. I can see some exciting opportunities through this work we are doing, and look forward to the day we can start offering craft beer tours out of Wellington for the day to Upper Hutt, putting our cool wee city on the map. UPPER HUTT LURES CRAFT BREWERS Phil Gorman is economic development manager for the Upper Hutt City Council The growth of the craft beer industry in recent years has presented Upper Hutt with some exciting opportunities to be a part of, and we have channelled significant time and resources into promoting what we have to offer as a city to the craft brewing community. More big food and grocery companies are seeking specialist help from sales and merchandising agencies as cost and margin pressures increase, Crossmark NZ managing director Grant Leach says. Typically, around 10% of New Zealand companies have outsourced their sales and merchandising activities, but Leach says that is changing. Manufacturers consider outsourcing sales and merchandising for three reasons: New Zealand’s geography makes a sales team a very expensive model to service; a manufacturer can come under increased pressure from cost of goods and can’t necessarily pass those on to the retailer; or a manufacturer may also be under increased margin pressure from the retailer themselves. “In the past 12 or 18 months we have noticed a change in the type and size of manufacturers that are seriously considering the possibility of using a sales and merchandising agency,” Leach says. “Previously it was probably a manufacturer with a turnover of up to around the $25 million mark – now we’re seeing that has changed, with manufacturers’ turnover up to about the $60 million mark."
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