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“It was just a really good business,” says Victoria Elworthy of Swannanoa-based Foundation Stocks & Glazes. “It was established, it had a good reputation and a good, high quality product. It made sense”.
It was these selling points that convinced Victoria and business partner, Mike Sleigh, to buy the business back in November 2015.
Established over 20 years ago, Foundation Stocks & Glazes (formerly Foundation Foods) manufactures gourmet stocks and glazes made using nutritious and wholesome recipes. The products are all made from New Zealand ingredients, many of them sourced locally wherever possible.
Whilst the business was originally based in Christchurch, the previous owner moved operations to Waimakariri post-quake when they outgrew their city premises. Now the company’s products are sold largely via wholesalers across the country and are used in restaurants from Invercargill to Whangarei. They can also be found on supermarket shelves in New World and Raeward Fresh as well as in a range of boutique food retailers across New Zealand.
“We have product shipped out pretty much every day,” says Victoria, “we can get product to Wellington overnight and to Auckland and Tauranga in two days. It has to be chilled and we have freighting costs, but we would have those wherever we operated from”.
They have also found no issue recruiting staff to their rural premises. The business currently employs 14 people full time, 10 of whom work in the factory.
After a few years of significant growth and development, including a brand refresh and the appointment of an Operations Manager and a Business Development Manager, the company is now preparing for its first export; a move that has always been in the planning.
“It’s been a long journey but we are not far away from sending away our first export container to Singapore,” says Victoria.
Although they’re taking Foundation Stocks & Glazes to the world, Victoria and her team are also focussing on increasing their reach domestically, with more stockists in the South Island lined up and a Territory Manager about to be appointed in order to manage and support sales in the Upper North Island.
“The past few years have been very exciting and we have done a lot of learning,” says Victoria.
For more information visit www.foundationfoods.co.nz.