East Side Kiwi Food provides comfort for homesick Māori in Perth

East Side Kiwi Food is responsible for nurturing the needs of many home sick Māori living in the Perth, Australia. The store has only been open for 10 weeks and co-owner Hiraina Ratima says the business has taken off.

Feijoa ice cream, fresh smoked snapper, the good old pork bones and watercress are just a few of the items the East Side Kiwi Food store offers to their customers. With the holiday season on the way, this shop gives Kiwis the opportunity to add a taste of home to their dinner table.

“You can get a bag of pork bones for $20 and just recently they got this real yum feijoa ice cream” says Perth resident Ms Wheoki.

“Went this morning, picked up some of the smoked snapper and had it with some fresh bread, it was yummy” said Ms Heta-Pore via a Facebook post on the company’s page.

Ms Ratima has lived in Australia for over seven years and through her contract work with West Power, she travels often. Along the way she’s picked up some invaluable skills of how to source and purchase uniquely New Zealand foods.

When asked about her business philosophy, she proudly responded with “Treat others the way you’d like to be treated. It’s simply manaakitanga”.

It’s a concept she uses to reaches out to the less fortunate in the community.

“There are a lot of homeless Māori here, so we donate some of our kai to a project called - We Are One who offer support to those on the streets” says Ms Ratima.

Ms Ratima says she looks forward to expanding the business to other regions throughout Australia.