Te Whakatōhea launches new mussel ship

By Kelvin McDonald

Whakatohea Mussels' new ship, the Kukutai, has been launched in Tāmaki Makaurau.

A ceremony was held this morning for the ship, which will become part of Te Whakatōhea's mussel farm business which produced its first mussel harvest in October 2016.

The world-class kiwi boat-building company McMullen and Wing built the innovative new vessel.   In November 2017 the company announced they had teamed up with Whakatōhea Māori Trust Board and Whakatōhea Mussels to build the boat and would offer up to six scholarships for local school-leavers to learn about boat-building by assisting with building the new vessel.

"Not only will we build a fantastic custom-made vessel for them, we will have their young people actually in the factory building it, and building great careers for themselves,” says Michael Eaglen, CEO of McMullen and Wing.

The ship will now make its way to Opotiki by mid-November.

For the background to Te Whakatōhea's mussel farm business, watch Native Affairs – Mussel Up below.