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GREEN DREAMS PROPEL HEALTHFOOD START-UP

An old hand in the New Zealand food industry is going green with his new venture. Michael Mayell, founder of Christchurch-based Cookie Time, has launched Nutrient Rescue, a healthfood company dedicated to increasing the amount of veges and fruit in our diet. 

Mayell also hopes success for the new company, which sources all its ingredients from New Zealand growers, will help propel a shift in our agriculture industry away from dairying to growing organic crops for export as plant powders. 

Nutrient Rescue has launched with three products. Its Green Shot combines powdered wheat grass, barley grass and other greens. A teaspoonful taken in a shot glass with water is equivalent to three serves of veges. Its Red Shot combines powdered blackcurrants and boysenberries to boost antioxidant and vitamin intake. The two are combined in the Double Shot, one 10g sachet of which is equivalent to four serves of greens and fruit. 

A health scare and subsequent review of his own diet made Michael keenly aware of what we are missing out on. Study results published in February by Imperial College London confirmed earlier international findings that a healthy diet should include 10 portions of fruit and veges a day, yet 60% of New Zealanders don’t eat the Ministry of Health’s recommended 5+ serves a day. 

“I want to change that,” says Mayell. “We are overdosing on macronutrients, especially meat, dairy, alcohol and sugar, so we need to dial these down if we want to be healthier. And we need more micronutrients, so we need to dial up whole plant foods, especially leafy greens. Plant food is simply better for your body.” 

Michael’s dream is made easier by the fact that organic crops have been grown and processed in New Zealand, and particularly Canterbury, for several decades now. Contracted growers supply Christchurch firm Claridges Organic, which in turn supplies Nutrient Rescue with Green Shot ingredients. South Canterbury firm ViBERI supplies organic blackcurrant powder for Nutrient Rescue’s Red Shot. Those involved in the industry agree exports offer the greatest opportunity for it to expand. 

“That’s where Nutrient Rescue can help,” says Mayell. “Getting our 100% New Zealand products in front of overseas consumers will build that market. One day we want New Zealand to be the organic farmer to the world. That will make for a healthier planet, and a wealthier New Zealand.” 

About Nutrient Rescue

MichaelMayell has set up Nutrient Rescue NZ Ltd as a social enterprise. This means it has a purpose beyond profit, and a social impact model against which to assess success. Nutrient Rescue’s social impact model focuses on family nutrition, planet-healing supply chains, and directing profits to causes it champions.

Red shot powder in a bowl
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