Our Growers

Shane Balle

Balle Bros - New Season Potatoes - Onions & Carrots - Pukekohe

“We are a medium-sized family business specializing in vegetable production and processing. We are passionate about growing and supplying quality food to the end user and for as long as I can remember, Morgan Laurenson has been an important part of that process for us”.

“Our family has been working with Morgan Laurenson for 4O years, back when Bob McGill dealt with us, then Stuart Robbie and Barney O’Connor.

Both businesses are aware that the trust built up over that time is important to maintain and even more so in today’s world. Our Wholesale Sales Manager Colin Murphy, aka ‘Chalky’ and Pam Dempsey, Wholesale Administrator, keep the lines of communication open with the team at Morgan Laurenson on a daily basis.

I’ve dealt with Bill Foster for a couple of decades now and find him very approachable, honest and always ready to discuss an issue. He will travel up to spend time in the paddocks with us to check out what’s happening here and he’s right there to help us find a solution to any product queries that may pop up.

For me I see Morgan Laurenson and Balle Bros as likeminded businesses. We work hard and smart to supply and process quality product so our end users are happy. It’s about us being real. I believe that’s how we have maintained such a productive working relationship over all these years”.

David & Andrew Greenwood

David Greenwood - Carrots - Ohakune

“While today’s family operation is a far cry from the farm my family worked in the 1970’s when I rode with Dad on his David Brown tractor, the quality of the relationship we have with Morgan Laurenson remains paramount. It’s an important part of the success we enjoy today”.

“I can get hold of the boys from ‘Morgies’ on my cellphone anytime. The whole team is on the ball with the volume required each day. The weather can be ‘very trying’ here in Ohakune so planning ahead is good because it makes our job easier when we are all on the same page. Karl lets us know how many bins he needs from us each week and being able to rely on that information has created a strong bond of trust between us.

Morgan Laurenson understand we work smart to a start/finish growing schedule so when the growing seasons change, they do their best to ensure we don’t end up with too much produce left over and that’s important to us.

Our (Ohakune) carrots have a very sweet flavour due to the frosts and sunshine hours they are exposed to here, so we (my wife and my sons Andrew and Malcolm) are proud of what we grow and we are happy with the way Morgies works with us to ensure we can supply and dispatch our product quickly and in premium condition”.

Brendon O’Connor

Brendon O’Connor - Pumpkins & Onions - Opiki

“Morgies will happily give back through our community and that’s important not only to us but every family in Opiki. They sponsor local events, supply product for Opiki School’s events and they help us out with product for Ag Days”.

“I went into partnership with my Dad in 1998 as a grower. While Dad (Barney) is retired he remains a shareholder and Director of Morgan Laurenson or “Morgies” as we affectionately call it..

Today, I supply Morgies with 250 tonnes of onions a year and pumpkins. The team work hard to ensure that, as a small to medium grower, I’m getting a fair deal and that pays off because it creates loyalty and trust.

They are not greedy and I would say they look after their growers better than the norm, so from where I stand I see my relationship with them as highly-productive, very hands-on and always supportive.

As a grower I like the hands-on approach. I like to talk to people face-to-face and on the phone as often as I need to and that’s how Morgies operate too”.

Chung Sue

Chung Sue - Lettuce Grower - Levin

“Growing vegetables for a living is in my blood. My uncle was a grower and he showed me how to grow the best all those years ago when I started with just 3 acres. I lived on the property and it took me 12 months to plant out the area. Today, I work smarter and faster and produce huge amounts of lettuce in shorter time periods. I love my job and strive to do it well, everyday”.

“We began growing fancy lettuce for Morgan Laurenson in 2005 on a casual basis and became a regular supplier about 12 months ago.

I totally trust them to do the best they can for me and I have found them to be very loyal, flexible and willing to help me to plan out my growing schedule each season.

If there is a problem, they work with me to find a solution that suits us both. I enjoy their company and there is always a positive outcome to their visits”.

Craig & Tony Parlato

Tony & Craig Parlato - Potato & Onion Growers - Shannon

“We are proud to be 2nd generation potato farmers in New Zealand”.

“Our family’s relationship with Morgan Laurenson goes back 30 years during which time our parents dealt with Stuart Robbie & Barney O’Connor.

Today we deal with the new boys on the block, Bill and Karl. We like that Morgan Laurenson is a local business because it’s both convenient for us and like us they are adding to the growth of the local economy.

They do listen to us and help us out when we need them too and we believe that’s because they are still small enough to care. As our gateway to Foodstuffs, we communicate, work and plan our cropping schedule closely with Morgan Laurenson so it works well for us and for them”.

Gareth Redloh

Gareth Redloh - Salad Grower - Hawkes Bay

“Having been employed for many years in the agriculture industry prior to setting up my current horticultural business, practicing biological agriculture with a sustainable approach to soil health has been and remains a top priority for me as a grower”.

“When Morgan Laurenson approached me about growing salad vegetables for them I knew I could deliver, but my concern lay around how they were going to deal with me as a very busy grower, how they would deal with my expectations plus how easy they were to deal with on a daily basis.

I knew their approach to these concerns would determine how well we worked together. It became apparent very early on that Bill, Dion and Karl were extremely easy to work alongside as their expectations are based on the reality of ‘commercial growing’ and their communication is best described as straight up, simple and honest.

I know what is expected of me on a daily basis, I am happy with the outcome of delivering the required product to them and I know that I can chat to any or all of them anytime I need too.

Morgan Laurenson seem to work with the same philosophy as I do which is to strive to be better than I was yesterday and to recognize there is always something new to learn today. I think we make a good team”.

Ian Corbett & Nathan Corbett

Corbett Brothers - Table & Seed Potatoes - Cheltenham

“When my Grandfather came to New Zealand from England in the late ‘40s to grow spuds, he dealt with Mr Morgan Laurenson and my Dad Rex dealt with Don McConachy and Bob McGill when they operated from their premises in Taonui Street in Palmerston North. We have been with Morgan Laurenson ever since”.

“Our family has been supplying potatoes to Morgan Laurenson since 1949 so our relationship with them goes back nearly 70 years. We were the first growers on their books and our family has stuck with them all those years because it worked for us then and still does today.

I like that Bill (Foster) and his team push our product by creating new ways of selling it and they are not scared to invest in the future and that has led to good business growth for us.

I find the team approachable, fair, honest and levelheaded. If a problem pops up we all get together and sort it out. Payment is never an issue because we trust them to get us the best price for our produce and we know they pay on time, every time. They are loyal to us and we are loyal to them. For us it’s all about integrity”.

Kim Young

Kim Young & Sons - Washed Potatoes and Carrots - Raetihi

“My grandfather Kim and my father Norman grew produce on this land as far back as I can remember and in 2017 I took over the management role here”.

“I deal with Karl from Morgan Laurenson. He talks my language. Loyalty and support goes both ways and we enjoy a win-win relationship. He communicates well with me and is aware of potential end results and will adjust circumstances to fit our needs when he can.

If we have an abundance of produce we want to move he is willing to help.

I work smart to ensure we have as little produce waste as possible and I work strategically to get the most out of the land we have. Morgan Laurenson understands us and they work smart to be ‘on-the-money’.

As a family business we work alongside each other every day to produce the quotas required on specific days. Being able to look ahead and work out final results is an integral part of running a business like ours and with Morgan Laurenson on board and that works well for us”.

Max, Rosie & the Kids

Max & Rosie Buckeridge - Potato Growers - Tui Creek - Waipawa

“I remember sitting on the 1060 Nuffield tractor under Dad's watchful eye as he planted the same paddock I now cultivate and nurture. I guess you can say growing is ‘in my blood’ and with Rosie and the kids right beside me we always strive to make the best business decisions with the right people”.

“We first contacted Bill (Foster) at Morgan Laurenson around 2010 and it wasn’t long after that he asked us about growing potatoes for him. We had just started out growing potatoes on a large scale so Rosie and I didn’t take long to decide that joining up with Morgan Laurenson would be a good business decision.

Morgan Laurenson are very approachable and helpful whenever we have any queries or questions. They work with us so we all get the best possible outcome for our product.

As a compact family business (we now have 3 children to consider), we are not only passionate about how we grow our potatoes and look after our land, we are also careful who we put our trust in as our decisions will affect our whole family not only today but in the future.

Being more than happy with the relationship we have with Morgan Laurenson and the way they looked after us, we have added more varieties of potatoes and beetroot to the supply list. Our business relationship certainly continues to grow and we are always open to the possibility of new developments, ideas and opportunities that may come from working with Morgan Laurenson”.

Peter & Craig Skou

Peter & Craig Skou - Seed & Table Potato Growers - Marton

“During World War II my Father was involved in growing vegetables in Upper Hutt for the Americans. He moved from Upper Hutt to Marton in 1950 and started growing potatoes here in 1952 and as a preschooler, I can still remember running through the potato paddocks. Today I am a second generation potato grower and my son Craig is following in the family footsteps”.

“Before I met Bill Foster, my father and I had dealt with Stuart Robbie and Barney O’Connor at Morgan Laurenson when we were supplying 20kg bags of potatoes for the export market.

Today we find Bill and his team get on well with both the older and younger generation and for us, a father and son business, that’s a very important part of our success.

We get plenty of notice to supply, even when it’s urgent and one of the team will often pick up the phone for a chat and communicate via email when necessary.

They like to keep things simple and straight forward and that suits the way we operate.

For us, Morgan Laurenson makes our working day easier because we know early on what they need from us so we can pre-plan by the week and the day and that’s important in our line of work”.

Peter Young

Peter Young - Mesclun Grower - Ohau

“I regard Morgan Laurenson as an important part of my ‘grower’ family”.

“Morgan Laurenson have really grown their business over the last decade and I know adding salads to their range has been a big part of their success.

As a well-oiled team they don’t let anything past them and that attention-to-detail includes someone on the team calling in to see me at least 50 times a year so the company stays hands-on with what is happening right here on the land and with the industry as a whole.

To have access to Tanja (Technical Manager) to help me with Government Compliance issues like GAP and Food Safety with our MPI Food Control Plan is so good and to be able to pick up the phone and call Bill directly is priceless. Morgies always help me out and they take into account the varied challenges that come with being a grower in this region.

Having them by my side really works for me”.

Ron Frew

Ron Frew - Washed Potato Grower - Ohakune

“I grew up in Ohakune, then left the area and returned in the early 60’s. We were sheep farmers back then before we were potato growers. My potato-growing career began when I tipped out a load of seed potatoes into a paddock I had cultivated with a draft horse and then began planting them out. Later, with Dad’s help, I bought 90 acres and the rest, as they say, is history”.

“A few years ago I met Bill (Foster) at a meeting put on by Foodstuffs here in Ohakune. The conversation we had on that day turned out to be the beginning of a new working relationship with the team at Morgan Laurenson”.

Stuart Young

Stuart Young - Salad Grower - Hawkes Bay

“As a grower born of parents who worked hard on their land all their working lives, my heart is very much in this business and I’m pleased to say I am happy supplying my goods to Morgan Laurenson because it means I grow and supply to a reputable company that seems to understand both my business and the importance of trust. That’s a very valuable outcome for me!”.

“I deal mostly with Dion (Mathews) at Morgan Laurenson. He and I have 30 years of work history behind us that began back in the day when he was employed in the agriculture industry here.

He approached me 6 years ago to discuss a growing opportunity that had popped up with Morgan Laurenson and I was keen to talk because I knew I could trust him. Morgan Laurenson set out their requirements in a clear and concise contract that had me interested on all fronts. They have, from the start, recognized my value as a grower and that’s unique in this industry and I truly appreciate it.

I like that their supply requirements are constant, they talk to me and they take on board what I need from them.

I like my product to leave my property in pristine condition, in pristine clean containers (I high-pressure hose all containers when they arrive on my property) so Morgan Laurenson gets pristine product delivered to their door every time.

It’s how I like to do things and it works for us!”