Culture blend creates the perfect cuppa 


Samāori Coffee, which proudly blends the Samoan and Māori culture throughout its products is among the 80 exhibitors at this year’s Chocolate and Coffee Show.

The South Auckland-based company is one the few Pacific exporters at the show, which is being staged at The Cloud, in Auckland from October 5-6.

Samāori Coffee’s story is one of passion and pride for both culture and the products the small company produced.

Two years ago, Aufai Jessica Rawiri and her husband Paully (Ngāti Paoa) started the family business which operates a wide range of mobile coffee set-ups all over Auckland.

The coffee beans and cacao it uses is Samāori Coffee’s true point of difference, Jessica says.

“Along with offering a very high-quality service, we use Samoan beans in our blend, traditional hand pounded koko (pure cacao) direct from family, and we are currently working on our very on kawakawa tea.”

Having decided they wanted to source Samoan green beans to produce an original Samoaori blend, the couple connected with Les Betham from Alesia Coffee Plantation in Samoa.

“I believed this would help create that point of difference in the Auckland market as well as providing an opportunity to establish more than just coffee – but a passion of culture,” she explains.

Just this year, Samāori Coffee received its first sample of Samoan green bean coffee from Aleisa Coffee.

“We took the beans in an orange Mitre 10 bucket straight to a friend and contract roaster at Project Coffee and the blend was roasted as a single origin, examined after roasting and left for degassing.”

Jessica and the Project Coffee team chatted about their options and quality of the natural Samoa beans and began to form blends to suit the Auckland market, by infusing a premium dose of beans from Samoa.

“The end result – an ethical sustainable blend of Samāori delivered.”

The couple are hugely proud of their Samoan and Māori cultures, and this is reflected in their branding.

“Diverse and unique, our artwork and designs have a story.”

“Our Samāori Warrior is a reminder never to give up, never to be controlled, undermined and to stand tall with mana (pride) and always be fa’amalosi (strong),” Jessica says.

The packaging also boasts war weapons – the Māori taiaha and Samoan nifo oti – significant symbols of strength in both cultures.

“Samāori Coffee is proud to represent and keep connection to the values and wisdom instilled by generations before us.

“The inner warrior and strength of these two cultures together are very powerful and spiritual… we want to build a brand that connects with a diverse multicultural society and inspires a passion of culture.”

It has not been an easy journey for the self-taught couple getting to where they are today, but Jessica says they are proud to be self-funded, aided by strong work ethics and good decision making.

Pacific Trade Invest New Zealand has helped the small business to grow, and it continues to open doors for Samāori Coffee, she adds.

“The opportunities give us that little extra push to get to the next step to showcase something else new, and the chance to perfect something we may not have done so well.”

Exhibiting at the Chocolate and Coffee Show and sharing Samāori Coffee’s products to a wider audience is a true privilege and very special.

“We look forward to sharing our story about how and where we source our products from in the hope, we may get more people to support and join us in our journey.

“As a small family run business with big dreams and even bigger potential we hope to activate more work within the corporate scene and continue to offer quality good service.”

Looking ahead, Samāori Coffee hopes to continue exploring and growing a sustainable range by being resourceful from within both the Samoan and Māori culture, while creating income for others along the way.
The small business also hopes to one day invest in a permanent spot and roast the beans in Auckland.

“This is one of our biggest goals however we need to keep working hard so we can afford to make that next step possible,” Jessica says.

For more information about the upcoming show, contact Trade Development Manager Ian Furlong:


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