New Approach to Rebuilding Business

Christopher and Luciana Barber

Eskdale craft beermaker Zeelandt Brewery is taking a new approach to rebuilding its business following the devastating effects of Cyclone Gabrielle.

Chris Barber, Managing Director and Head Brewer Zeelandt Brewery, said Zeelandt is moving to contract brewing after floodwaters destroyed the brewery, all stock and equipment.

“We’ve spent a lot of time thinking about how we rebuild and what the future looks like.  We love what we do and are committed to our business and customers.

“Over the short term, we are contract brewing in Auckland to continue getting Zeelandt beer to customers, with the first batches of beer being available towards the end of April.

“We are also launching a new fundraising beer, called “Back on the Horse”, to benefit local first responders and our local community trust.

“Despite the Eskdale community suffering large losses, Zeelandt is in a position to help. With the generosity of our suppliers, we are launching a new beer with all proceeds (after excise tax and freight) going to local organisations involved in the emergency response,” says Chris.

Back on the Horse is a New Zealand IPA inspired by a small wooden horse that remained standing on Chris and Luciana’s property after floodwaters receded. His father Les, built a wooden horse in the vege garden for his two grandchildren to play on. While the force of the floodwaters took away the sheds and cars that surrounded it, the horse remained. To Chris, this was a sign that the only way for the community to move on from this event was to get back on the horse.

Available in 440mL cans and 30L keg, Back On The Horse can be purchased directly from the brewery website 12x440mL $108 plus freight; available in stores where Zeelandt Brewery is usually stocked RRP $9.99 per can; and for trade customers through the usual channels - The Bottle-O Onekawa. Invisible Agency, and Zeelandt Brewery.

All funds raised from the sale of the beer will go towards Bay View Volunteer Fire Brigade, Lowe Corporation Rescue Helicopter, and Bay View Community Charitable Trust.

Zeelandt thanks its suppliers for their support:

  • Tried & True - Label design
  • Craft Brewing Co - Brewing
  • Gladfield Malt - Barley
  • NZ Hops - Hops and yeast
  • Crafty Canners - Packaging
  • Label & Litho - Label printing
  • Beer Fridge - Cold storage
  • Invisible Agency - Distribution and sales
  • Keg Star - Keg supply

“We are so incredibly grateful for the love and support showed by Kiwis during the aftermath of the cyclone, and to our suppliers for getting behind this fundraising beer.  We hope that Hawke’s Bay people will support Back on the Horse and enjoy drinking it so that we can donate as much money as possible," said Barber.