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Horowhenua's Taste Trail last weekend was a huge success with thousands enjoying visiting our top local food producers. In its second year the event has grown and is likely to become a permanent fixture attracting people from far and wide.

The trail had a great line up of local quality food producers that included Genoese Pesto, Woody’s Free Range Pork, Turks Poultry, Woodhaven Gardens, Levin Eels, Thoroughbred Bread, Tendertips Asparagus, RJ’s Licorice and Bagrie's Dairy Farm.

These local businesses opened up their back offices to give everyone on the trail the chance to see how food is prepared, packaged and distributed - often to the world. There were plenty of tastings too!

It's a massive commitment to be a part of the trail and takes many months of preparation. The look on many owners faces was a real sense of pride. Thanks also to the many volunteers like Altrusa who did a great job helping out.

Horowhenua's Primary Production Sector is a big employer that provides 1750 jobs and generates around $130m in economic activity.

Recently I was lucky enough to attend the opening of Te Awahou Nieuwe Stroom Museum in Foxton.

The centre is a real community asset that captures our Dutch connections (next to De Molden windmill), strong Maori culture and will attract many local and international tourists to our area. It's well worth a look.

There's been plenty happening locally and I've tried to attend as many senior college prizegivings as I can. I'm always blown away how talented our local students are in the classroom and on the sports field. Congratulations to Paraparaumu College Principal Gregor Fountain who has landed the sought-after job as Wellington College Principal where he takes over in term 2 next year.

Senior students will have just finished NCEA exams and I wish them well in their studies or employment opportunities in 2018.

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