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Tuesday 28 June 2022

New funding for Pic’s homegrown peanuts

7th December 2021 By Staff Reporter | | @foodtickernz

Nut butter baron Pic Picot is pushing ahead with his mission to develop homegrown peanuts by bringing forward a project to support marketing opportunities for the spread.

Pic’s currently spends $10m importing peanuts and is backing trials to grow the nut in Northland.

The Nelson-based company has secured $45,460 of funding from the High-Value Nutrition National Science Challenge to determine what nutrient composition and health claims can be made about peanut butter produced from New Zealand grown peanuts.

Pic’s Peanut Butter is collaborating with Plant & Food Research to supply samples of New Zealand peanuts for nutrient analysis from growing trials that are occurring in Northland this year, with support from the Ministry for Primary Industries’ Sustainable Food and Fibre Futures fund.

Plant & Food Research would analyse the nutritional composition of four samples of New Zealand grown peanuts, and four peanuts grown overseas in Brazil, Argentina, Australia and Nicaragua.

The composition would be assessed against Food Standards Australia New Zealand regulations that relate to nutrition, health and related claims.

Pic’s currently spends around $10m annually importing about 3000 tonnes of peanuts a year from Brazil, Nicaragua and Zambia – formerly Australia too – for its portfolio of around 25 products, which are sold domestically and exported to Australia, Asia, the US and the UK.

“The hi oleic peanuts we import contain 30% more monounsaturated fats than regular peanuts which is similar to avocados and olive oil,” Pic’s general manager Stuart Macintosh said.

“We are hopeful that the new hi oleic cultivars sourced for the Northland trials this summer will be comparable with the possibility of some unique characteristics which will be determined by Plant & Food Research nutritional composition analysis.”

A key project collaborator is the Te Roroa iwi and the peanuts that will be evaluated as part of the study would come from a trial site that Plant & Food Research has established on iwi land at Omamari in the Kai Iwi lakes district.

Plant & Food Research would work with Pic’s to further develop an understanding of nutrition and health claim regulations, as well as the wider regulatory statutory labelling requirements.



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