Before I start this I want to state for the record that I live in the most wonderful part of the world and am truly lucky to be here and be made so welcome. It all sounds like I’m about to say something detrimental about New Zealand and in some way be an ungrateful Pom. That’s not the idea but like anywhere in the world we can always learn from others if we are prepared to open our eyes.

In New Zealand we seem to be following the American/British model for food purchases and fast food, that being large corporates dictating what and where we buy. It doesn’t have to be this way, it should be part of our culture to buy local and support local, to eat and cook in season, but it isn’t. We should know where our food is coming from by right and not just when a marketing department thinks it would be useful to them.

We produce some of the most extraordinary raw materials and have the capabilities to do even better but our food is now some of the most expensive in the western world and frankly the quality is in decline.

Now obviously we can make food choices if we have the money and shop in some of the more exclusive food stores where the choice and quality is hugely enhanced, There’s Farro Fresh and Nosh in Auckland, Moore Wilson in Wellington, Belmondo and the Good Food Trading Company in my home town of Tauranga to name just a few. These wonderful people are flying the passionate flag for good food and local produce and are, along with our ever growing band of Farmers Markets, trying to recapture our food supply from the faceless conglomerates that have hijacked it for profit.

So how do we change the system, well what I wanted to show you was some pictures from the market in St Jean de Luz in the Basque region of Southern France. This market is open 6 days a week with the outside being used on the Saturday, the choice is staggering but more importantly notice the people who are shopping. There is no split on socio-economic lines, everyone shops for their food here and only uses the supermarket for other essentials like toilet roll and kitchen cleaner.

When you look at these photos, I hoe that you agree with me that you’d rather be shopping like this.

This lady didn't seem too impressed to be part of a photo-shootSt Jean De Luz is only a small fishing town

not sure about the heads being left on though

and finally even the fast food rocks

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