The Food Writers’ Conference 2017

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The Food Writers’ Conference 2017

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Date(s) - 03/11/2017 - 05/11/2017
All Day


I am delighted to invite members to attend our Conference in Hawke’s Bay on November 3–5.

This year we are teaming up with F.A.W.C! – the Hawke’s Bay’s biggest food and wine event. We’ll be attending some F.A.W.C! events as well as enjoying a programme of speakers and professional development, and of course exploring the best of what Hawke’s Bay has to offer food and wine-loving visitors.

Please note: REGISTER EARLY to make sure you get in to your preferred dinner option for Saturday night; we have preferential early booking for all F.A.W.C! dinners on Saturday 4 November from 7–12 September. On 12 September events will be open to the public for booking.

Niki Bezzant, President

What: Food Writers New Zealand Conference 2017

When: Friday 3 November to Sunday 5 November (opening weekend of Summer F.A.W.C!)

Where: Hawkes Bay

Tickets: $120 per person for conference registration (includes breakfast, morning tea and lunch Saturday, F.A.W.C! launch party and F.A.W.C! Talks admission). Saturday dinner and Sunday lunch additional (see programme). 

Accommodation: Is available at a special Food Writers NZ rate at the Crown Hotel which is also the venue for our Saturday programme, see to book, or for other options. 

Transport: Will be via bus to and from events venues (excluding Saturday night dinners). 

To book: Email us on and pay online to account
38 9011 0701145 00. Include your name as reference. 
Please specify if you would like to book the Saturday night dinner at Bistronomy (limited to 14 people) and/or any plus-ones for Opening night party or F.A.W.C! Talks.

F.A.W.C! Events: If you’re staying on in Hawke’s Bay and would like to attend additional F.A.W.C! events, these are available for preferential booking on request until 12th September. Email


F.A.W.C! LAUNCH PARTY with Hawke’s Bay Wine Makers

6.30pm – 9.30pm Friday 3 November Black Barn Growers Market, Havelock North


7.30am – 9.00am Saturday 4 November F.G. Smith, Ahuriri

MORNING SESSION  Saturday 4 November, Crown Hotel, Napier
Sponsored by  

9.30am – 10.30am Food Writers NZ AGM

10.30am – 11.00am Morning tea 

11.00am – 12.00pm Panel discussion

Food Education: What are our kids learning about food?

  • Kathy Paterson, Chair
  • Bruce Robertson, Advocate, 
  • Overview of Massey University Research in over 100 schools Years 7-8 (intermediate)
  • Andrea Bidois, National Heart Foundation NZ
  • Research recommendations in action Year 9 -13 (secondary)
  • Suzy Newman, Food Technology Teacher:Havelock North High School Technology at year 9 and the Food Technology, Hospitality and Home Economic Streams
  • Q&A
  • 12.00pm – 1.00pm Paul Gunn, head of Activation and PR, Colenso BBDO, and colleagues
    The modern media landscape: what’s happening and what does it mean for
    food communicators?


    LUNCH Saturday 4 November
    1.00pm – 3.00pm
    Sponsored by Potatoes New Zealand 

    AFTERNOON SESSION Saturday 4 November

    3.00pm – 4.00pm TBC 

    4.00pm Bus to MTG Century Theatre Napier 

    4:30pm – 5:30pm F.A.W.C! Talks
    A session of quick-fire, TED-style talks from thought leaders, on the theme: For the Love of Food. 

    5.30pm Bus back to Crown Hotel

    DINNER Saturday 4 November

    6.30pm onwards; various locations

    Food Writers have preferential booking for F.A.W.C! dinners, 5–12 September; public bookings open 12 September. See the list of dinners below, the cost varies and is paid directly. We will email you a link for VIP booking of Saturday night dinner events on Thursday 7th September. Keep an eye out! 


    Book in for the President’s Dinner with Niki at Bistronomy; a set menu, $75 + wine, limited to 14 people. RSVP for the Presidents Dinner with Rachel at


    MORNING SESSION Sunday 5 November

    10.00am – 11.30am Bus to brunch and market visit, Hawke’s Bay Farmer’s Market, Hastings. Explore the fabulous farmers’ market and enjoy brunch treats at your leisure.

    11.30am – 12.00pm Bus to Havelock North

    12.00pm – 1.00pm Visit to Muse

    Muse is a fine art dealer gallery owned by local artist Kaye McGarva Tollenaar, who is passionate about making art more accessible. You will remember Kaye and her husband Richard Tollenaar as the couple behind the very successful commercial baking venture in Auckland, Pandoro Bakery.

    LUNCH Sunday 5 November

    1.00pm – 3.00pm Malo, Neighbourly Best New Regional Restaurant 2017 CGFA
    Malo offers a fresh approach to the Hawke’s Bay food and wine scene. Honest food with a sophisticated, modern twist and an emphasis on local, seasonal flavours. Three course set menu – $85.00 per person includes bread, sides and coffee to finish. Purchase wine by the bottle or glass.  

    2.30pm Bus back to Crown Hotel and end of formal activities, afternoon at your leisure.