When was it started your business and why?
Kia ora my name is Gordon. I’m the Founder and CEO of Natures Therapeutics. Our operations commenced August 2020. Based in Whangarei New Zealand, we manufacture a range of health and personal products. Each product contains at least 1 plant extract traditionally used by Māori.
Our health products help relieve respiratory, muscular, joint, and skin conditions. Products are natural – a great alternative to the chemical-based options!
Final products are manufactured at our facility in Whangarei to ensure we can control quality.
Why did I start Natures Therapeutics? I lived overseas for 35 years. I returned to live in New Zealand in 2015. When I returned, I decided to restart taking the traditional natural formulas I had grown up on, to improve my well-being. (I fully tautoko (support) people entering the bush and harvesting for their personal use and family/friends etc).
However, I quickly realised, that others wanted these traditional plants too – but didn’t have access and/or didn’t want to spend the time to harvest and process. I started Natures Therapeutics to provide products for these people.
What is the most unique/exciting aspect of the business?
Achieving true quality and sustainability. Purposely, the decision was made to not harvest from the bush. In partnership with our supply chain, plants are grown in controlled, purpose designed spaces. Harvesting is undertaken according to tikanga (tradition). The health properties are extracted in a laboratory environment so we can guarantee each batch is of identical strength.
What are you most proud of?
Reviving traditional knowledge passed down with mana (prestigious recognition) and aroha (genuine and loving intention). Our manufacturing process integrates modern technology to provide an end product that is well-suited for our modern day lifestyles. Creating good stable products with decent shelf life has been challenging but we persisted. We are very proud of our product range and the many comments we receive from happy customers.
Where is the product sold? Do you export?
Our facility is located in Rathbone Street, Whangarei. We do have a small shopfront at the front of our facility where people may come, browse, ask questions and of course purchase. The majority of sales are received via our online store naturestherapeutics.co.nz.
We can, and do ship, globally. At present we don’t export as such (to an offshore distributor) but we do have the capability and are presently exploring the potential.
How did you get through the challenge of Covid-19? What other hurdles have you faced?
The initial national lockdown came very early in our journey. Like many other New Zealand businesses, we could not operate. The realisation of COVID-19 impacting long term motivated us to look at a product/s that could help people impacted by the virus.
In addition to our existing Kūmarahou Elixir, we tested and developed 4 other products that can significantly help with symptoms. Those products quickly became, and remain, our most purchased products. As with any business that is predominantly ‘online’, getting our message and story out to the public has been a hurdle that is not easy to overcome.
We have worked very hard to learn about and upskill in the digital marketing space. It was very slow to begin with, but we are now enjoying good steady growth. Whilst our digital marketing skills are still developing, our customer’s reviews and ‘word of mouth’ is greatly helping our story getting out.
Why are you proud to be New Zealand Made?
We are extremely proud to be New Zealand Made. However with that comes responsibility. Globally, New Zealand has a very good reputation as a clean and reputable manufacturer. Every day we challenge ourselves to be good caretakers and strive to always deliver excellence. Our mission is “exceeding expectation”. Being recognised as New Zealand Made feels good and in some ways is very empowering.
What does the future hold?
Our vision is “preferred supplier”. So our future is all about working toward our vision. A strong foundation has been built and we are so proud we have taken time to ensure tikanga (cultural tradition), safety, quality, value, and sustainability have been embedded as core values. Our customers demand a product that does what they need/want it to do.
Keeping that ‘front of mind’ our sights are firmly set on strengthening and growing our domestic and international exposure.