Tomoana Food Hub Gathers Pace

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Trevor Taylor’s vision for the Tomoana Food Hub (TFH) is fast taking shape. Key clients New Zealand Miracle Water and Jamestrong Packaging are in place, and building of a distribution depot for dairy giant Fonterra is underway. Almost half of the approximately 22 hectare site in Elwood Rd, Hastings is developed, and infrastructure for the entire site has been completed. The message from Trevor’s son and TFH’s Development Manager Logan Taylor to food-related industries who want the benefits of being clustered on one site, sharing resources and infrastructure is, “we design and purpose build for, and offer long term leases to tenants”. Logan says TFH is keen to see discussions around a Food Innovation Hub become a reality in Hawke’s Bay, preferably on the Elwood Rd site. If not, he still assesses that the TFH, zoned specifically for industrial food business, will be a place for businesses that emerge from the Innovation Hub to locate. Being a privately-owned, family business they can make things happen quickly. “There isn’t the bureaucracy of a big corporate,” Trevor says. “We can cost-effectively provide a high specification building to meet the needs of new business and, by working with the Hastings District Council, we reduce the red tape.” Another positive is the business partnership developed with Maungaharuru-Tangitū Trust, who are a 25 percent shareholder. “They are a really good fit as they share our long term vision and aspirations,” Trevor says. Current clients are New Zealand Miracle Water, owned by Chinese investors and exporting Hawke’s Bay water in bulk for distribution throughout Asia; Jamestrong Packaging, a multi-national company producing metal packaging for the likes of Heinz Wattie’s which has its National Distribution Centre close by, built by Trevor’s team in 2003; and Fonterra, who are building a consumer products distribution depot. Tomoana Warehousing, another Taylor business situated on land adjacent, also has a food-grade warehouse on site. From an orcharding family dating back to 1895, a century later Trevor purchased part of the closed Tomoana meat works, establishing Tomoana Warehousing. Originally a transport company it’s now a multimillion dollar business also involved in warehousing and third-party logistics, working with importers, exporters and manufacturers nationwide. Effectively it rounds out the TFH service. Managed by another of Trevor’s offspring, Stewart Taylor, it has 18,000 square metres of warehousing and a modern fleet of more than 70 trucks with a wide range of capability. Innovative solutions are increasingly important to match consolidation in the Hawke’s Bay horticultural scene, with bigger companies growing greater volumes, Trevor says. “We’re centrally located for bringing produce off the Heretaunga Plains, transporting product to Napier Port and distribution around the North Island.” The TFH is on track to becoming a $100 million venture, and has proven that Hawke’s Bay has the construction and contractor expertise for projects of large scale – New Zealand Miracle Water’s factory covering 2.5 hectares, and Jamestrong Packaging 2 hectares. “My vision has always been to develop a cluster of industries on one site, sharing resources and infrastructure, which reduces capital requirements… it’s about getting clients to work collaboratively to mutual advantage,” Trevor says. The TFH provides ample trade waste disposal capacity, reliable supply of clean water from the region’s artesian underground aquifer, and is serviced with innovative technologies including ultra-fast telecommunication systems. Buildings, roads and lighting are designed to the highest standards, and being a food environment there is a ‘no pests’ policy. “We are developing much more than an industrial business park,” Trevor says. “We are creating an environment for food and beverage businesses to cluster and share knowledge, by-products, energy, logistics and infrastructure, resulting in increased productivity and profitability.” Logan adds, “We want people to know that we’re open for business, we’ve got land available, we’re experienced, we know how to provide for a client’s individual needs.” Posted: 6 July 2018