The Tuatara Blog


Carl and the boys at the new plantTuatara Brewing Company has a new home.  We have moved down from the leafy foothills of Reikorangi into the ‘big smoke’ of Paraparaumu.  The move has taken a lot of planning and even more hard work, but all our fermenters are in the new spacious brewery and full of Tuatara beer made on-site.  The conditioning tanks are currently on their way down the hill and then the bottling plant.

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This is the first of two posts detailing some significant recent developments at Tuatara Brewing Company.  Basically, we have new beers and a new brewery – it does not get much more exciting than that.  First up, it’s all about the beer.  On 1 May 2012 Tuatara will have an unprecedented four APAs on sale.  That number includes one welcome return and two brand new brews.  We will be celebrating the occasion with launch parties in a number of cities around the country.

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World renowned drinks and travel writer Stephen Beaumont is currently touring New Zealand to take a close look at our flourishing craft beer industry.  The author of A Taste for Beer, The Premium Beer Drinker’s Guide and the forthcoming World Atlas of Beer (co-written with Tim Webb), has been brought to New Zealand by Tuatara Brewing Company, Moa Brewing Company, New Zealand Hops and Cryer Malt.  Mr Beaumont will spend almost a week visiting breweries and bars in Auckland, Wellington, Blenheim, Nelson and Christchurch.  

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One of the most important aspects of running a successful Kiwi business is giving back to the community.  Tuatara Brewing Company has always been proud to sponsor and support a range of worthy community groups and events.  We have a special affinity for the Tuatara up at Zealandia Wildlife Sanctuary (http://www.visitzealandia.com/site/zealandia_home/) which is unsurprising since their species was the inspiration for our brewery name.
Zealandia has launched a long-term programme to protect and nurture Tuatara.  They are still endangered after being extinct on the mainland for over 200 years.  The first Tuatara were released in Zealandia in 2005 and the first hatchling was only found in March 2009.  That was a significant breakthrough but the growing number of baby Tuatara now need more support.
Unfortunately, adult Tuatara actually have a tendency to attack and even eat the young.  Even other baby Tuatara can be dangerous, as this poor little chap found out in July after they had to amputate a leg after he was attacked, probably by a sibling. (http://www.stuff.co.nz/environment/5149911/Tiny-tuataras-leg-amputated-to-save-its-life) So, it is clear the young Tuatara deserve all the help and protection we can provide, from each other, the adults, the weather and other predators.
That is why we became an official sponsor of the new Tuatara nurseries which were recently opened at Zealandia in a small but moving ceremony.  Brendon Doran of the 2Kiwis blog (http://www.2kiwis.com/) attended the event, took some great photographs and posted a thoughtful account of proceedings.  (http://www.2kiwis.com/?p=2792) Here are some edited highlights:
“Once all the relevant dignitaries had arrived we entered the valley and all walked down to the location of the new nurseries, the young tuatara being transported to their new homes in adapted plastic containers.
There was a small crowd on people in attendance as we heard first from Neavin of the Tenths Trust (Te Ati Awa), then from representatives of Ngati Koata.  Brian gave a welcome and background on behalf of the Karori Sanctuary Trust and the final word went to Sean Murrie of Tuatara Breweries (who helped sponsor the project).
Once Sean had cut the ribbon it was left to Sue and Nicky from Victoria University to carefully release the tuatara into the three nurseries, everyone crowding in to catch a glimpse of the little lizards (actually not lizards, but sphenodontia) being introduced to their new accommodation.  Most of the tuatara quickly took refuge in the hollows and burrows they were placed next too but luckily a few hardy ones stayed out where they could be seen and admired.  Once they were all inside some food was also put into each nursery, moths and small calcium dusted locusts.
Each nursery is quite large and had been prepared with leaf litter, small plants and other typical forest floor material.  Depressions were in place so each tuatara could have its own area and the hope is that they will burrow through the deep sandy base and over time it might be possible to see the burrows through a window in the base of structure.
 
It was an informative and interesting visit, hopefully the tuatara will love their new nurseries and lots of people will be able to get a little closer to these interesting animals.”
Here at Tuatara we could not agree more.  Thanks to the organisers, Brendon for the story and the photos (well worth checking out) and, above all, best of luck to the young Tuatara in their new homes.  We are raising a bottle or two of Tuatara beer right now and toasting your good health and (very) long life.
Cheers from the team at Tuatara

One of the most important aspects of running a successful Kiwi business is giving back to the community.  Tuatara Brewing Company has always been proud to sponsor and support a range of worthy community groups and events.  We have a special affinity for the Tuatara up at Zealandia Wildlife Sanctuary which is unsurprising since their species was the inspiration for our brewery name.

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At a packed function in the iconic Southward Theatre, Tuatara Brewing Company recently picked up the supreme award at the Electra Kapiti Horowhenua Business Awards. The head judge Suzanne Snively said Tuatara Brewery was an "exceptional company" that the region should be very proud of.  She recommended people “watch their further progress with enthusiasm and anticipation."

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Last week, the annual prestigious Deloitte Fast 50 index of New Zealand’s quickest growing businesses was announced and Tuatara Brewing Company was stoked to not just make the list for the third straight year but to also jump two spots up to number 32.  This was based on our growth rate of 216.24%.  We were also delighted to be crowned the fastest growing manufacturer in the Wellington/Lower North Island region.  
Tuatara debuted in the Fast 50 at number 39 in 2009, moving up to 34 in 2010 and now to 32.  Only sixteen of the fifty companies listed in 2011 had been on the list before, and only four of those have appeared three or more times before.  We are proud to be in that small group.  
The Deloitte website provides profiles of all the winners who between them contributed nearly $600m to the New Zealand economy over the last three years and created 1,500 jobs.  Here is what they same about Tuatara: (http://www.fast50.co.nz/company/tuatara-brewing-company-ltd/)
“Coming in 32nd place and growing by 216.24% is Wellington's favourite brewery.  To say that Tuatara Brewery has taken off in the last few years is an understatement.  Heck, they’ve been propelled into orbit.  The local demand for good beer is insatiable, and with volumes running at about a million litres a year, Tuatara has become one of the leading lights in the craft industry.  It probably helps that they're based in the lower North Island where beer appreciation is not so much a cult as a full-blown religion.”
They also link to an exclusive clip where you can see Brewer Carl Vasta and Director Sean Murrie chatting about their experiences of Tuatara’s recent growth.  It is a good watch.
Director Sean Murrie said the brewery was grateful for the award which recognised the hard work of their team and a commitment to quality during a sustained period of rapid expansion.  “We have to concentrate on making great beer because it is what we do.  Over the last three years, we have added new beers to our range, increased production, gained new customers and started working with a plethora of new outlets and stockists.  We are very grateful to our customers, suppliers and stockists.  It’s been a great ride so far and I don’t see it slowing down anytime soon,” he said.
To qualify for consideration in the Fast 50, businesses must have had an operating revenue of at least $300,000 in Financial Year 2009 and been operating in New Zealand for at least 3 years.  In 2011, a growth rate of 144% was required to crack the Top 50.
Cheers from the team at Tuatara

Last week, the annual prestigious Deloitte Fast 50 index of New Zealand’s quickest growing businesses was announced and Tuatara Brewing Company was stoked to not just make the list for the third straight year but to also jump two spots up to number 32.  This was based on our growth rate of 216.24%. We were also delighted to be crowned the fastest growing manufacturer in the Wellington/Lower North Island region. 

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If you are one of the 1,421 people who currently follow Tuatara on Twitter (@tuataranz - Onboarding excellence in beer ideation with 360 degree leveraging of scalable hop-related competencies), you will have noticed a series of cryptic posts regarding the future of Tuatara APA, our fast-selling American Pale Ale.

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Even by our own high standards, last week was big. All our Tuatara beers were entered in to the 2011 Brewer’s Guild of New Zealand Awards and on Thursday the results were announced at a rather good dinner in the Old Town Hall. Friday and Saturday were Beervana, the very successful re-launch of the country’s biggest beer festival with a new owner, at a new venue and with a few format tweaks. Over five thousand patrons came through the door which means it was a success by any measure and Tuatara was well represented on the concourse.

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Tuatara’s second ever billboard is now up in Auckland. It is on Posonby Road and has the cheeky message that Tuatara can be “just like one of those premium international lagers, only good.” The billboard is near the Golden Dawn bar which has been turning heads since it opened in December. Behind the “speak-easy” style non-entrance, Hallertau and Tuatara beers are flowing. Our Sales Manager Will reckons bottled Tuatara APA in particular has been “going off” in this trendy bar which is “rammed and crammed” most nights.

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With the Auckland Food Show upon us this week, we have been thinking about our northern cousins. Auckland is New Zealand’s biggest market for pretty much everything and that certainly includes beer. The craft beer scene there has been bubbling away for a while with a couple of really excellent outlets doing their best in a sea of fizzy lagers. In recent months however, momentum seems to be building, both from new venues starting up and existing venues really making an effort to improve their beer selection and service.

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