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Free lessons offer basics in te reo Maori

Free te reo Māori lessons for absolute beginners are being held at the Raglan Library on Wednesday nights.

Organiser Michael Edmonds says he will be helping teacher Lucy Haru to deliver short and fun lessons that are designed to give students the absolute basics of te reo.

The half-hour lessons at the library, between 6pm and 8pm, will give people a taste of te reo to see if they want to take their learning further, he says.

“This is basic, basic.”

Students will learn numbers, colours and basic sentence structure.

Michael says there is nowhere in Raglan where you can go to learn basic Māori words.

He says the Te Ataarangi lessons held at the marae don’t allow students to speak English and can be challenging for many people starting out.

Michael says he learned Māori that way and struggled not being able to speak English.

There will be a maximum of eight students per lesson to “ensure everyone has a voice”.

Anyone who is interested in learning the absolute basics of te reo Māori can contact Lucy Haru on 022 694 1594 or Michael Edmonds, ph 027 673 7827 or email

Inger Vos

Two Raglan locals and good mates have started a natural pet food company right under our nose. Dave Smith and Frank Bellerby launched ‘Good Noze’ this week and we caught up with them to check it out.

Where did the idea to start a pet food line come from?

Born partly out of frustration really.

Being an owner of some fussy pets and a pantry full of partially eaten pet food I realised that there was potential to come up with a new product to remove the stress and waste from daily feeds.

Turns out, they weren’t fussy at all – I was just feeding them the wrong stuff.

So you were trying to solve a problem?

Pretty much. But I couldn’t solve it on my own because I knew nothing at that stage about animal nutrition. Frank, an animal nutritionist, was already in the animal feeds business and he was up for the challenge and liked the direction for his own business.

We felt there was a gap in the market for a 100% natural and easy to handle product.

Plus we convinced ourselves that it was possible to make pet food more attractive with the right product, packaging and marketing – kind of like how Eco Store transformed the way people looked at cleaning products.

What was the goal in terms of the type of product you produced?

The aim was to produce a sure thing!

A natural product that no dog or cat could resist, but more importantly, one they should and would consistently eat.

Once we discovered the freeze-drying process and understood it, we had our solution and were sold.

The product is nothing but real meat that has been freeze dried, so the nutrients and taste remain, just the water is removed and with it the smell, refrigeration and handling issues.

How long has it taken you to develop the product?

From the genesis of an idea it’s taken us just over two years to craft, refine and test the product to the point where we know its totally pukka for pets.

Your packaging is really cool, especially for pet food. How did you come up with the idea?

We decided to ask our dear friend and artist Hayley Hamilton to create some characters that we could use. Hayley went totally above and beyond the brief. She provided a series of sketched images to choose from, then fleshed out characters, before finally delivering hand painted works of art.

I recognise a few Raglan locations and locals on the website. Who did your website?

Actually Maki from Raglan Ink designed our website… she’s awesome to work with.

We wanted to showcase Raglan with all it’s beauty and character. Turns out Raglan was the perfect backdrop when trying to capture people and their pets hanging out together. Local Leanne Roughton, the photographer, was fantastic to work with in terms of interpreting our vision and nailing the shoots quickly. Huge thanks to Karamea of Raglan Ink, Ray at Raglan Barber, Steve and Candide of Raglan Kayak, Rach from The Social Club and Sarah at Rockit for helping us out.

We have more photo shoots planned so the website is a work in progress.

What are the benefits of the product?

Speaking from experience, it really is the most convenient product to use. It’s natural, light and dry with minimal smell yet with all the nutritional goodness of raw meat. The tastiness means dogs don’t get sick of it and because it’s 100% natural you know you are feeding your pet only the good stuff.

Any other products in the pipeline?

Yes, we have also just launched another product. It’s called Dogs All Day Breakfast – a fusion of meat-bix and our freeze-dried product.

Plus we have a freeze-dried product and an All Day Breakfast for cats on the way.

Where can you buy it?

Raglan Supervalue, Raglan Four Square and The Herbal Dispensary.

And hopefully, in time, all Natural Foods stores up and down the country.

Check out the website:

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