Singing “Born in the USA!......” Our almonds start their lives in the land of stars and stripes, the USA, the largest supplier of almonds worldwide. Our almond orchards can be found in California, the state’s largest food export. The almond lifecycle has many stages and an abundance of natural beauty. The light pink and white blooms usually make their appearance between late February and early March and that’s when the growers start to assess the likely volume of the new season’s production. Wind, rain and activity by our best buddies the bees all play a major part. Many almond trees are not self-pollinating, so bees provide the missing piece of the puzzle! Buds set over the following weeks and harvest happens from mid-August to October when the almonds are at their very finest. Then they leave the homeland and take a big OE. We roast them (for our Roasted variety that is), right here in New Zealand locking in the freshness with our fresh-lock resealable bags.
Believe it or not, Vietnam is the Cashew Capital of the world! Shouting – “Good Morning Vietnam!” It’s true, no-one on the planet produces more of these delicious nuts than the Vietnamese. Remember that for your next pub quiz, with cashews to hand! The reason they produce top-notch cashews is because they have superb growing conditions, simple as that. But, now it starts to get a little nutty, because cashews are quite an unusual nut. They grow from the bottom of cashew apples. The apple portion is called an ‘accessory fruit’ or ‘false fruit’ and it’s the nut beneath the apple that we eat. Also, the nut isn’t actually a nut! Well, not in the botanical sense of the word. It’s actually a seed. For freshness, we wait until the cashews arrive in New Zealand before we roast and lightly salt them (or not salt them, in the case of our Unsalted variety), then we lock in the freshness with our fresh-lock resealable bags. Then you get to enjoy the delicious ‘false’ fruits of our labour!
Pistachios have ‘holy roots’, being one of the three seeds mentioned in the Bible. Our Pistachio trees have roots in the USA - in California, Arizona and New Mexico. We source our nuts from pistachio-growing families throughout this region. Their livelihoods depend so much on the fickle personality of Mother Nature and their ability to work in harmony with her. They constantly work with one eye on the weather and the other on their crop. It can be hard yakker, but what they all have in common is an absolute commitment to quality and a great love for what they do…which is why we love working with them. These pistachios are roasted and lightly salted with great care and then packed here at home in New Zealand. The freshness is locked in with our fresh-lock resealable pouches.
Our cranberries start their lives in a bog. Yes, we know that doesn’t sound like the poshest of addresses but it’s where cranberries like to live – areas in both North and South America with soft, marshy ground and acid peat soil, usually near wetland. They grow on long-running vines. Every autumn from around mid-September until mid-November, they reach their peak colour (turning an amazing vibrant red) and flavour. They are then ready for harvest. Machine harvesters ever so gently tumble roll the crop to allow the berry to detach from the plant, and because the berries float, they can be collected and extracted from the bog using a system of booms and pumps, it’s quite an impressive sight to behold! Our cranberries are then dried, by partially dehydrating, a process similar to making grapes into raisins. When they arrive in New Zealand they are lovingly added to some of our fruit and nut medley’s, providing a tart sweetness. The freshness is then securely locked in with our fresh-lock resealable pouches.
Sorry, no prizes for guessing where our Brazil nuts come from. Yep...Brazil, where they grow in the lush South American forests in pods that can weigh up to two kilograms - that’s one big pod! Inside each pod is about 10-20 nuts packed together a bit like an orange. Although commonly called the Brazil nut, in botanical terms it is the seed from the fruit of the tree, but Brazil ‘seeds’ just didn’t sound right, so nuts it was. Pods mature during the wet rainy season and are ready for harvest when they fall to the forest floor (which is why some Brazilian monkeys have red and rather sore heads). The nuts are then collected for processing by harvesters called ‘castaneros’ and are sorted by size, then dried and separated from their shells. This activity provides more than half the yearly income for thousands of families in the Amazon and protects millions of acres of forest from deforestation. So Brazil nuts are not only good for your health, they’re great for your conscience as well. These Brazil Nuts are packed into our Deluxe Nuts Mixes, and the freshness is locked in with our fresh-lock resealable pouches.
We’re not sure why these nuts are named after Hazel but we do know where the finest Hazelnuts come from – Turkey! So of course that’s where we get ours from. Turkey is one of the few countries in the world with just the right weather conditions for hazelnut production and accounts for the majority of the hazelnuts produced in the world today. Hazelnuts are harvested every year in mid-autumn, when the trees drop their nuts and leaves. Our growers always wait for the nuts to fall on their own rather than use equipment to shake them off. The trees really appreciate this! The hazelnuts are then brought home to New Zealand and packed into our Deluxe Nuts Mixes before the freshness is locked in with our fresh-lock resealable pouches.
Not to be confused with Toucans (although their bills do look rather similar). Our pecans come from our nearest and dearest neighbour, Australia, who happen to be the fourth largest producer of pecans in the world (behind the USA, Mexico and South Africa). In Aussie, pecans prefer hot humid summers and the native American tree nuts are grown primarily in northern NSW and South-Eastern Queensland. Harvest time is from April through to June. The pecans are then packed in New Zealand into our Deluxe Nuts Mixes. The freshness is locked in with our fresh-lock resealable pouches.
Not just a Charlie Brown favourite, they’re everyone’s! Peanuts just love warmer climates, and our peanuts are grown in Argentina. Strictly speaking, peanuts are legumes, not nuts, so they don’t grow on trees but rather in the ground, where pods of peanuts grow off the pea-like peanut flower. Who would have thought? Our peanuts are blanched to remove the reddish skin covering the kernels. These blanched peanuts are packed in New Zealand into our Raw Deluxe Nuts Mix and the Classic Scroggin and lovingly oil roasted and salted for our Roasted & Salted Peanuts. The freshness is locked in with our fresh-lock resealable pouches.