February 25, 2022
Tupuna inspires Ngāti Hauā land use project
A Waikato iwi has teamed up with government agencies to train its people in horticulture and trial high-value crops on its land.
Rukumoana Schaafhausen from Ngāti Hauā Iwi Trust’s commercial arm, Te Waharoa Investment, says the iwi’s 50 land trusts around Morrinsville and Matamata want alternatives to leasing out their land.
The Peria Project was inspired by the tūpuna Wiremu Tamehana, who in 1846 established a model village at Peria to blend western ways with mātauranga Māori.
“We’ve got the likes of AgResearch, Plant & Food, Assure Quality, all these government agencies who will work beside us to look at what are the best land use options. You’ve got to remember we’ve been disconnected, disenfranchised from out whenua for too long, so this is a huge learning opportunity for whānau,” Ms Schaafhausen says.
Te Waharoa Investment is putting in $775,000, with $1.1 million coming from the Ministry for Primary Industries’ Sustainable Food and Fibre Futures fund and $150,000 from the Ministry for Social Development.