TUKU FOR TOMORROW
Tuku, the first Māori winemakers’ collective, was launched in July. “It’s a collective of like-minded people who think we can achieve more with our businesses and our chosen careers working together instead of individually,” said Tuku chairman Steve Bird. The group was formed after members realised it would be more cost-effective to collaborate when showcasing wines, both overseas and locally, and that they could share ideas. It’s made up of te Pā Family Vineyards, Tiki Wine & Vineyards, Bird Wines, Kuru Kuru Wines and Ostler Wine, family companies that all whakapapa back to specific waka: from Tauranga Takitimu Waka and Rotorua-te Arawa Waka in the north, to Ngāti Awa, Ngāi Tahu and Ngāti Tūwharetoa in the south. They’re all artisan, sustainability-focused producers with a sense of whānau and a deep connection to the land. “Plus we also all like to have fun, we all love wine and we’ve all been in the game for a long time, so we know where all the bones are buried,” laughs Bird.
LEFT TO RIGHT: Winemakers from Kuru Kuru, Te Pā, Tiki, Ostler and Bird Wines.