It’s a long way to come from Papua New Guinea for the Auckland Food Show.But Patrick Killoran, owner of Banz Kofi of PNG says the trip was worth it and he has learnt a lot from attending the four-day Auckland Food Show. The show had more than 300 exhibitors and more than 30,000 visitors.
As a first timer at the show’s Pacific Islands Trade & Invest Pacific Hub Mr Killoran was impressed with the turn out and the interest his stand generated. Although he had attended other shows, they were more for tourism and general markets he said. The Food Show, however, was specifically targeted for people looking for food and beverages he said.
Mr Killoran has been in the coffee business for decades and runs a coffee shop in addition to his coffee business in Mount Hagen in PNG. His coffee is exported to several countries around the world and has received appreciation from celebrity coffee enthusiasts including United States Democratic Party nominee for the Presidency Hillary Clinton, according to Mr Killoran.
Mr Killoran was a one-man band at the show bringing in a helper for the two busiest days on the weekend. He was happy with his stand as part of the PT&I Pacific Hub and he’d like to add in a few special touches to get more attention, next time around. “I’d have someone out the front, bringing people in,” he said.
He appreciates the role that an exotic place such as the highlands of PNG can play in promoting the product and he would like to tell the story in a little more detail as also design attractive signage, add more images from PNG and the growing and processing of the coffee.
Banz Kofi’s aroma wafted at the show with a tinge of generosity: Mr Killoran wanted to contribute something back to the New Zealand community and instead of giving away free samples, he collected a gold coin donation toward the New Zealand children’s cancer charity Kids Can for every cup of coffee tasted.
At the end of the show, he had collected $250 for the charity and added another $250 from his pocket to contribute a total of $500 on behalf of Banz Kofi. The funds were handed to PT&I Trade Commissioner Michael Greenslade to be forwarded on to Kids Can.
Despite the success of attending the show, Mr Killoran’s coffee almost didn’t make it in time.
One of the two boxes were held up by customs and only released the day the show started.
Mr Killoran said he would like to see less bureaucracy in getting products into the country if people were serious about improving trade with the Pacific.
Overall, however, Mr Killoran said he was pleased with the show and gave PT&I’s Trade Development Manager Joe Fuavao great compliments for organising a great stand and making things easy for the participants at the PT&I Pacific Hub.
Mr Killoran also dropped in some left over coffee bags to the Wise Cicada café and organic supplies store in Newmarket after meeting the owners at the show.
The start of a new relationship over coffee perhaps?
For more information, please contact: Trade Development Manager Joe Fuavao at firstname.lastname@example.org