In the little town of Te Araroa, just 20kms from the East Cape Lighthouse, an unpretentious café sign hides one of the slickest operations I have come across.
It goes by the name of East Cape Manuka Honey Café but it is much more than that. Sure the café is an attraction well worth a stop, with excellent coffee, a well stocked cabinet and an all day breakfast menu, but it was the extras offered which caught my eye the first time I went there, and resulted in us returning last month with a group of 12 people.
The shelves around three walls of the café are stocked with several ranges of well packaged Manuka based products from creams and lotions to cosmetics and pet products. There are so many varieties and great deal combinations on display that none of us could resist browsing and eventually buying.
Also on offer for $10 per person is a one hour educational talk and tour of the production area. Our host Sue Pahuru was easy going, a great entertainer and had product knowledge to burn. We also learned that the company provided seasonal employment for a number of locals and a source of income for anybody in the area who allowed them to place hives to tap into their Manuka tree flowers.
Sue sold us on the idea of doing the tour when we called in on our reconnaissance trip, and we weren’t disappointed. All 12 of us had breakfast, most of us bought some product.
This was not only a great lesson in add on selling, but also educational and fun.