New Zealand Meat Pie Resources

- list compiled by Eric M. Appleman from the respective websites, Dec. 2013 -
to accompany my YouTube video Meat Pie: The View from Dunedin

Bakels – Headquartered in Switzerland, Bakels is a worldwide firm that manufactures bakery ingredients.  N Z Bakels Ltd., based in Auckland, runs the Supreme Pie Awards, which occur in July and date to 1997.
Official Great Aussie Pie Competition - John Ross of Pastrycooks and Bakers News Monthly, and Craig Perry, formerly of GFW Foodservice, came up with idea for an annual pie competition in 1989 “to provide a national platform for quality pie improvement while providing a vehicle to gain maximum media exposure for pies and pie makers in their battle for a share of the fast food dollar.”.  The first competition was held in 1990 in Sydney and it alternates between Sydney and Melbourne.

British Pie Awards – “The pie is one of the icons of British cuisine. Savoury or sweet, the British eat millions of them every year. These Awards are a national celebration of British Pies in all their varieties.”
Food Standards Australia New Zealand A bi-national government agency that  develops and administers the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code, which lists requirements for foods such as additives, food safety, labelling and GM foods. 
meat pies
Selected commercial pie makers distributing in New Zealand, organized alphabetically.  (includes really big pie makers such as Irvines, Pams and Big Ben, which have large automated facilities; more regional businesses such as Jimmy’s and Marlow Pies; and smaller makers such as Who Ate All the Pies).
Big Ben Pies – “Real Meat.  Real Pastry.  Real Pies”  Produced by George Weston Foods Limited Baking Division New Zealand (, whose other lines include Tip Top bread and Ploughmans Bakery.  George Weston is in turn a subsidiary of Associated British Foods Plc.

The Cottage Bakehouse -  “Try us, the taste is worth it.”  Compared to others on this list, the Cottage Bakehouse is a very modest operation.  The main bakery located at Bond and Jetty Streets in Dunedin, with retail stores in Mosgiel and Pt. Chalmers.
Coupland’s Bakeries – “The Home of Good Baking”  In addition to pies, the bakery produces a full range of cookies, cakes, bread and rolls.  “Pies are a core part of our business and we have 2 automated lines capable of producing thousands of pies per hour from single serve through to jumbo family size.”  The manufacturing site is in Christchurch and there are store locations throughout the South Island and in Hamilton.  |
Dad’s Pies – New Zealand owned and run since 1981. The firm, based in Silverdale, 30 km north of Auckland, emphasizes its state of the art technology; a video on the company’s website shows its Auto-Bake Serpentine oven and baking system (+) in action.  Founder Eddie Grooten immigrated from the Netherlands at age 27.  According to the company’s Facebook page, it manufactures the KFC pies.  |
French Bakery Ltd  – New Zealand owned and operated since 1978 and headquartered in Christchurch, French Bakery produces a full range of baked goods including bagels, croissants, pastries, quiches and rolls. The website shows 15 flavours of meat pies: five classic, nine gourmet and the distinctively packaged Speight’s Steak and Ale pie.
The Goodtime Food Company Ltd. – “Baked in Goodness”  Based in Napier (in Hawkes Bay) in the North Island and Christchurch in the South Island.  Offerings include the Classic range, the Hub, the Metro, Sunnydays; additionally, under license from DB Breweries, Goodtime started producing and distributing the Tui pie in 2008.
Gourmet Foods Ltd – Based in Tauranga (south of Auckland on the Bay of Plenty).  Pats Pantry started in 1966 and produced a variety of baked goods including pies. In 2005 Pats Pantry purchased Ponsonby Pies and registered the Gourmet Foods Ltd name and maintains both brands.”  Cost of 12 basic cello wrapped 180g pies is $29.53 incl. GST.
Irvines – Founded in 1917.  Based in Wiri, South Auckland, Irvines is part of Goodman Fielder NZ.  According to its website, GFNZ is “the largest consumer food supplier in New Zealand, with sales from continuing operations of approximately NZ$1 billion.”  (GFNZ in turn is part of Goodman Fielder, “Australasia's leading listed food company,” headquartered in Sydney).  According to the website, Irvines “currently occupies what was the home of Georgie Pie, when Goodman Fielder purchased the site in 1998.”  Further, “The site makes 10,000 pies per hour. It is estimated Irvines has enough capacity to make every day, every pie consumed in New Zealand.“  Not surprisingly, Irvine’s is one of the more widely distributed brands of meat pies.
Goodman Fielder  |  2

Jester's Jaffle Pies - "Ridiculously Tasty"  "Jesters Franchising NZ Ltd is a wholly owned and managed New Zealand gourmet pie company.  The original concept was developed in Perth, Western Australia in 1997 on the philosophy of producing the healthiest, finest quality pies around."  Jester's started in New Zealand in 2002; the website lists 17 stores of which eight are in Auckland.  Jaffles sells sixteen flavours of pies.
Jimmy’s – Jimmy’s produces some 20,000 pies per day from its location on the main street in Roxborough, in Central Otago, where it has been based since 1960.  Dennis Kirkpatrick runs this family business, which was started by his father Jimmy; they still use the same recipe.  Jimmy’s has a rather limited line of pies, although they do produce gourmet flavours for their shop.  Jimmy’s also does not have much of a web presence.   However, Jimmy’s pies are something of an institution and are widely distributed in Otago and the Southland.
Maketu Pies – “Honest to goodness”  “Made only from the freshest and best ingredients, each recipe is lovingly perfected in our country kitchen overlooking the sleepy little village of Maketu.”  The website lists 19 different kinds of the 200 g snack size meat pies plus vegie pie and apple pie.  |

Marlow Pies – The Healthier, Tastier Choice.  Karyn and Kelvin Williams took over the Dunedin-based business from his uncle George Carse in 1995, and their son Brendan Williams now runs the operation.  Marlow’s boasts 26 flavours, and commits to being able to deliver fresh pies anywhere in the South Island overnight.  Marlow opened at its new location at King Edward and Crawford Streets in May 2013.  |
McDonald’s: Georgie Pie – As documented in an excellent Wikipedia article, Georgie Pie was a NZ fast food chain started by Progressive Enterprises (Countdown supermarkets) in 1977, sold to McDonald’s in 1996 and fully shut down in 1998.  In May 2013 McDonald’s reintroduced Georgie Pies in a number of North Island restaurants on a trial basis; that proved successful and later in 2013 it started adding the offering to more of its restaurants

McGregor’s Bakery“Baking at Sparrow’s Fart Since Adam was a Cowboy”  Based iin Wanaka in Central Otago, McGregor’s has a quirky marketing gimmick of “keeping New Zealand slang alive since 1913.”  (Sparrow’s Fart is not a location, but means very early in the day).

Mrs. Mac’s - Mrs Mac’s traces back to Ken Macgregor’s Bakewell Pies in Perth Western Australia in the 1950s.  The brand launched in the 1980s and the company entered the New Zealand market in the 1990s. “Mrs Mac's branded products can be purchased through many dairies and lunch bars in both the North and South Islands, as well as a growing number of convenience stores and fuel retailers.”
Oxford Pies“Hand-built in the Waikato.”  The business started in 1977 on Oxford Street, and is now headquartered at Pukete Estate in Hamilton. The website notes “we purchase our meat from The Chef Ready Meat Company in Hamilton who use locally grown prime beef,” In Oct. 2012 Oxford Pies launched John’s Pies ("More Pie less Money") featuring three 170g varieties.
Pams – This is the brand of Foodstuffs group, New Zealand’s largest food retailer (New World, Pak’n Save, Four Square).

Pie Face - Sydney based Pie Face, a franchise chain founded by Betty Fong and Wayne Homshek in 2003, had about 76 stores around Australia by the end of 2012.  The chain has been going international, opening its first U.S. store in Manhattan in 2012.  In Aug. 2013 it opened its first New Zealand store at 18 Shortland Street in Auckland; according to The New Zealand Herald it "established a central kitchen in Mt Wellington capable of producing 1000 pies an hour."  Franchise holders Julian Field and Jared Palmer have a goal of opening 60 stores over ten years.
Who Ate All the Pies? – “World Famous at the Otago Farmers Market, with a bakery in St Kilda, Dunedin, Who Ate All The Pies is an Artisan Baker of the finest Gourmet Pies.”  This was a modest ongoing business when Steven Turner, originally from Lancashire, acquired it.  These are premium pies, a bit more expensive that many others, but made with attention to detail and quality.  “All the red meat that we use in our pies, including mince, is seared and browned to keep the flavours in. This is a sharp contrast to many other pie manufacturers who boil their meat and, by design, cook the flavours out.”  |
The United Kingdom has its own meat pie tradition.  Interestingly around 2010-11, a New Zealander who moved to Newcastle and his father-in-law formed the New Zealand Gourmet Pie Company (“Bringing New Zealand to the UK”).
The Overseas Experience (  2007.  "Frankie's Guide to New Zealand EP7."  posted at New Zealand Videos.

André Taber.  2006.  The Great New Zealand Pie Guide:
A Tasting Guide to Some of the Best Kiwi Pies up and down the Country.  Renaissance Publishing.

Wikipedia.  "Meat pie (Australia and New Zealand)."
Kim Knight.  “Always blow on the pie”  July 14, 2013.
“Pies of New Zealand” - A blog from 2009.

Whole Peeled aka The Maud Gonne Band.  1996.  "The Meat Pie Song" on Induce.
Pierate: The Pie Review Blog  - Launched in 2009, this U.K. based blog rates pies according to “The Seven Cs.”
Robert Macklin.  The Great Australian Pie: a history and culinary adventure. April 2012. [Kindle]