Case Studies

Mātaitanga Whāiti

Hardwork, grit and a shared focus on sustainability. Local businesses share their stories on why living, working and investing in Horowhenua makes good business sense.

Lewis Farms

A family business, Lewis Farms has been treating taste buds commercially for more than four decades.

Attributing the delectable taste of their asparagus and berries to the temperate Horowhenua climate, the Lewis family have many years’ experience growing quality food in the district, with four generations working the land since 1934.

Tendertips grows asparagus around the Horowhenua District in Himatangi, Foxton and Poroutawhao, but Lewis Farms is not only known for their asparagus. The Lewis family are also delighting taste buds with their luscious strawberries and raspberries grown on the main farm at Poroutawhao.

Produced in poly-tunnels utilising hydroponic technology, this method produces super sweet berries and means an extended growing season from September to May. Known for their superior flavour, the berries are incredible on their own or to elevate your home baking.  Lewis Farms’ berries are also used in their handcrafted Whole Berry Strawberry and Raspberry Jams.

A visit to the farm is an experience in itself. The pack house shop at 47 State Highway 1 North, Levin sells their freshly picked berries, asparagus and famous jam, alongside gift boxes, honey, coffee and other locally produced goodies. There’s a playground for the kids and real berry ice cream to be enjoyed by people of all ages. Be sure to pop in while you’re passing through.

The shop is open September through April, seven days a week, with products available to purchase year-round from their website, local stockists and select supermarkets.

Lewis Farms were one of the founding producers driving the Horowhenua Taste Trail – an annual journey through the Horowhenua's specialist food producers.


We embrace all things clean and green in Horowhenua, and when it comes to food, some of the tastiest green delicacies you can enjoy are Genoese’s authentic pesto and dips, produced in Levin.

Established in 1993, Genoese crafts its famous pesto the traditional way for connoisseurs to use in innovative ways to take their cooking and eating experiences to the next level. The flavoursome basil used in their range of pesto and dips is grown in Aotearoa. Nurtured from seed, only the best and freshest basil leaves are used in the final product.

The Genoese product range accommodates vegan, vegetarian, gluten and dairy-free diets. The quality basil leaves are blended with carefully selected natural ingredients in small batches, creating delicious, healthy and versatile dips and spreads which are enjoyed in homes and restaurants throughout Aotearoa.

Surrounded by market gardens, the Levin based family business is the number one retail pesto brand in Aotearoa, with their products available from a range of retail stores and through distributors for chefs and hospitality customers.

Roasting vegetables grown at the neighbouring gardens with Genoese pesto is the perfect balance of flavour, and a real taste of Horowhenua.

Genoese is one of the founding producers in the Horowhenua Taste trail, an annual event which showcases the depth and breadth of produce developed in the district, through a series of behind-the-scenes experiences.

Heights Experience

With the mighty Tararua Range as their backdrop, Heights Experience is a rural adventure you won’t forget.

The brainchild of Huggy Hughes, Blair and Anna Robinson, Heights Experience was born over shared whiskeys during the 2019 duck shooting season.

Combining rural hospitality, adrenaline and a healthy dose of the great outdoors, Heights Experience welcomes small groups to a 2200 acre family farm with a variety of outdoor activities. Friends, co-workers and/or family can gather to try their hands at Clay Bird Shooting, Archery or Axe Throwing while breathing in the crisp country air.

Despite feeling like you’re off the grid, modern day conveniences such as Wi-Fi are available in the rustic 1905 woolshed which has been converted into an intimate and unique event space.

Rich with history, the woolshed was once the site of long hot shearing days, cold beers after a hard day’s work, and horses tethered outside as kids and dogs ran in and around it. It was already on the property when the current owner’s great-great grandfather purchased the land in 1907 and used as a woolshed until another was built in the 1980s.

Off-road rides, giant games, darts and hole-in-one golf fun also entertain guests who frequent Heights Experience for team building, corporate functions and special celebrations such as weddings, stag dos, Christmas parties and family reunions.  For smaller events, a BBQ and barn area is available for hire. Here you can bring your own food and drink while soaking in the country atmosphere, connecting with nature.


Blair and Anna have a deep respect for the lush Horowhenua environment and all the blessings that Papatūānuku offers.

In order to minimise the effects of shooting on the farm, Heights Experience only uses fibre wad cartridges in their shotguns which, unlike traditional plastic wads, breaks down naturally leaving no trace behind.

In addition, Heights Experience pride themselves in offering sustainably farmed, grass-fed single origin meats exclusively to Saville’s Gourmet Butchery in Levin, giving their customers a real taste of quality local produce. Visit