WHO WE ARE
It’s all about whānau
At LeaderBrand, our family heritage underpins everything we do, from building our team to planning for the future. Here’s how our family values have shaped us into who we are today, and moulded what we’re aiming for tomorrow.
Where we came from
Our founder Murray McPhail set up LeaderBrand in 1975 when he took over the family sheep and cattle farm, converting it to grow his first crop of potatoes.
It was a humble start on 40-odd hectares of farmland, but with some grit, ingenuity, and a whole lot of hard work, LeaderBrand evolved from a small family venture to New Zealand’s leading horticulture business.
We’ve sure grown a lot over the years, but our values and roots are as sturdy as ever.
farming for a healthy future
Where we’re going
We know that to make sure the next generation has access to a healthy environment, nutritious food, and engaged communities, we need to start farming for a healthy future today.
It’s why we aspire to be the best produce grower we can be, setting the standard for others to follow when it comes to a healthy and sustainable future.
What we believe in
Basing a business like LeaderBrand around family values creates an environment that’s both down-to-earth and empathetic.
We invest in one another and accept people’s differences, taking pride in what we do and in each other too. We honour our handshake and deliver on what we say, working through difficult conversations together as a team.
MEET SOME OF OUR FAMILY
After more than 45 years in the business, we’ve welcomed some incredible people into our LeaderBrand family.
Here are just a few of them.
RILEY – ENGINEERING APPRENTICE
Riley is the very first female to work in our agriculture workshop as a member of the workshop apprenticeship programme!
I’m enjoying being out in the fields fixing equipment, checking out the new commissioned equipment and learning all the essentials about how to keep our tractors, trailers, and all the other new farm technology, up to scratch!
WILTON – GROUND CREW
I’ve been a tractor driver at LeaderBrand since 1995 and they tell me I’m the eldest person working at LeaderBrand!
I like that I keep the young ones on their toes and they help me learn new tricks like using the GPS system in the tractors.
My job is to ensure that we’re evening the ground out and putting in good beds with good drainage which means we’ve got a great base for the crops.
GEORGE – JUNIOR agronomist
What I love about my role is everyday there is a new challenge and there is always something new to learn. I get to work across all aspects of agronomy for broccoli – from harvest right through to sales.
I have a passion for the outdoors and love growing fresh healthy products.
Tanya – Farm Compliance Officer
I like that my job is varied and interesting. I get out and about across many different areas of LeaderBrand and see the different operations.
I love working with such a wide range of people from all walks of life. We have so many great people across the LeaderBrand teams who are all so passionate about what they do.
Mani – Viticulture Technician
2022 Young Grower of the Year finalist & Gisborne Young Grower winner!
I have been working with LeaderBrand for 5 years and I like the variety of tasks in my role, that’s what I enjoy the most.
I manage hundreds of young vines daily, supervise important pruning and help maintain vine and soil health.
Lalit – Processing
I was a chef and wanted a change of career so walked in looking for a job. The next day I had a new job and trial and have never looked back.
Antz – Operations
I joined LeaderBrand when my first son was born and I needed more certainty than being a part time musician.
Over the years it’s never been dull. I even spent time in Japan where I became semi fluent in the language and culture. But Karaoke definitely not.
Richard – CEO
I came to LeaderBrand back in 1993 to earn some cash to get back overseas.
The challenges have kept me here ever since. I’ve gone from tractor driver to CEO without an interview.
Kylie – Sales
I love the hustle and bustle of produce, I’m in my element talking to customers.
I’m proud to work in produce because we grow fresh and healthy food for all New Zealand families. It’s authentic and I can truly say I’m proud of what we do and the positivity we can have on kiwi’s lives.
Billy – Farming
I moved up from Ashburton after I graduated to get away from home for a couple years.
I’ve never really looked to go back as I enjoy being challenged and the challenges keep coming.
Got a question for us?
If you’re keen to learn more about our culture and values, feel free to get in touch.