In the tiny rural town of Takapau, employment options are slim.
However there is a lifeline that has kept thousands of families going for decades.
It's the Silver Fern Farm meat processing plant. It's one of the biggest in the country, with 59% of its workforce being Māori.
Heading the multi-million dollar plant is its first Māori manager, Laurie Davies, who's aiming for the top and taking his people with him.