Well folks, this year has been quite the rollercoaster. With a number of exciting things happening for our small company, and a number of challenges also.
Firstly we want to say a massive thank you to all of you who have helped our vision to become a reality. We are forever blown away by the loyalty and generosity we see from our customers each year. We could not continue to pursue this dream without each and every one of you.
This year saw us take a huge leap in our business goals with our pledgeme campaign. This campaign was to crowdfund toward taking Hunt and Gather Bee Co. into the international market. This is a huge opportunity for our wee company and the uptake has been incredibly positive. We managed to raise $350,000 toward taking our honey overseas, hiring a Sales and Marketing Manager and Apprentice Beekeeper. To see the full campaign, including how many shareholders we now have in our company head along to the Pledgeme page here.
Following on from this campaign we have begun working closely with an agency to support us with our international launch. This will continue to be developed next year, with a very exciting launch of a new product into both the international and New Zealand markets. Unfortunately, as soon as we began the work toward launching internationally this year we were hit with the latest COVID-19 outbreak and lockdowns. This saw our international plan have to take a back seat as we focused on supporting our family, new employees and our business within New Zealand first and foremost. Thankfully we have all pulled together as a team and as a country and we are grateful to be able to continue to work and produce our delicious honey. We are now in the throes of picking up the international launch for next year and are already beginning to plan exciting things for 2022.
We have hired an apprentice beekeeper called Denzel, who comes to us from the Coromandel and has thrived working alongside Rory. With a passion for bees, surfing and building a career in beekeeping, we have really enjoyed having Denzel join the team. We have also got Max onboard for work experience, in conjunction with Raglan Area School. Max is an enthusiastic learner who has gained a lot of skills through working alongside Rory and is excited to see where the work experience can take him when he leaves highschool. With us being in the middle of peak honey season currently, having the extra hands onboard has been a welcome addition for Rory.
As part of our Pledgeme campaign we also hired a Sales and Marketing Manager to run the national side of things with the expansion internationally. Emma has come onboard with experience in the field for over 10years, a local sense of pride and aligning values with our company. Emma has been working closely with Hannah to prepare for a big year next year, with a number of events across the country, a new product launch, and a number of new retailers and collaborations in the pipeline.
Lastly, we have been able to use the time over COVID-19 lockdowns to get our brand new extraction shed up and running, and are very excited to share that this is now running and will allow us to process and produce the honey right in our backyard, instead of outsourcing this mahi. We are pretty chuffed with this addition and are looking forward to seeing what doors this opens for our business in 2022.
We wish you all a very happy and safe Christmas and New Years. We will be taking some much needed time off with our whānau from 23rd December to 5th January 2022. All orders placed at this time will be shipped upon our return.
Thank you again for the continued support, and we can’t wait to bring you even more in 2022. Stay safe and happy holidays everyone.
Hannah, Rory and the Hunt and Gather Bee Co. Team.