Interview and photograph by Florence Noble.
More than once we’ve considered getting a job at one of our favourite stores or market stands around Britomart just to get the staff discount. Biltong fan Pip Allen actually did it.
Are you from Auckland?
Originally I’m from the United Kingdom.
What brings you out here?
I backpacked here for a year and fell in love with New Zealand and have been here five years now.
What do you do here?
I’m selling biltong at the Saturday morning La Cigale produce market in Takutai Square. Biltong is a tasty air-dried meat snack. South African. The owner of Bob’s Biltong is South African and he’s at Matakana market today. We do five different flavours: Teriyaki, Chilli, Mild Chilli, Gluten Free and Original. He designs the recipes and outsources it to a company in Silverdale. It’s 100% New Zealand meat.
How did you get into selling biltong?
I personally got into it because I bought so much of it and I love the product.
Is this your elaborate plan to get a discount?
Yes, that was my dastardly plan, and it worked!
How much biltong do you buy?!
I go through about five packs a week for my family. I have to hide it from my littlest – he’s eight – he’s obsessed with it.
What’s the family favourite?
It’s a toss up between Original and Chilli. I actually like Gluten-Free, myself.
What’s your idea of fun?
I like to do active things with my kids. They love Extreme World, in the Wairau Valley. It’s got a soft play, bowling, arcade games, driving games and upstairs is Laser Tag. I love running around shooting the kids. I’m tall enough to shoot them over the top. Not that I’m competitive.
Whats your favourite thing to spend money on?
I would say a good family day out. Extreme World! I do love my kids, but I do like to shoot them with lasers!
Have you got your eye on anything to buy at the moment?
Bacon Brothers’ bacon butty. I have that every week.
Do you think local markets are the future?
I do. I go to all my local markets. I think it’s really important to support these people, they work bloody hard, and I think we should come back to this.