Who Are We?
The first Foodstuffs co-operative was formed in Auckland in
1922. On 6 July 1922, Foodstuffs founder J Heaton Barker called
together members of the Auckland Master Grocers' Association to
discuss plans for the formation of a co-operative buying group. The
buying group expanded in 1925 with the introduction of Four Square
branding on members' stores. Similar cooperatives were set up in
other parts of the country, with Wellington commencing also in
1922, Christchurch in 1928 and Dunedin in 1948. Initially the
buying groups traded under different names but in 1935, the name
Foodstuffs was applied to all the original co-operatives.
There have been various mergers between the regional
co-operatives, and today there are two co-operative companies:
Foodstuffs North Island Limited and Foodstuffs South Island
Limited. Each operates independently and autonomously
with its own Board of Directors, Chief Executive Officer and
management structure. There are no common members or
The organisation has continued to evolve, adopting supermarkets
early in their evolution with the formation of the New World group
in 1963. The PAK'nSAVE group evolved later and the first store was
opened in Kaitaia in 1986.
Despite its phenomenal growth, Foodstuffs remains 100% New
Zealand owned and operated with all profits and taxes remaining in
New Zealand. The organisation consists of two separate, regionally
based, retailer-owned co-operative companies and a Federation body,
Foodstuffs (NZ) Limited, which is based in Wellington.
Did you know
Four Square celebrated their 90th Birthday in 2014