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From Paraguay

Tania Bachetta and Augustin Medina.

By Stan Stewart

They are a gift for New Zealand from Uruguay. This attractive and talented young couple are determined to make Aotearoa New Zealand their home. A long way from their birthplace in Uruguay, Augustin in NZ for 8 years, and Tania in NZ for 4.5years, both have been granted permanent visas. They have many talents now their immediate challenge is to focus on one.

Freshly squeezed juice is the answer they have hit on. At this point it seems clear that their immediate future will be related to juice and food. Their ‘TatiFrutti’ food van is to be seen at markets and many gatherings and events around Whitianga and neighbouring areas.

Talk about juice and their eyes sparkle with enthusiasm. Given half a chance they will wax lyrical about the difference real, freshly squeezed juice can make to your day (maybe your life). The juice they sell has no additives. It’s just juice – squeezed that day – fresh and undiluted. No wonder that at large events people queue for this wonderful stuff. They source their oranges from a spray free orchard in Matarangi – up to 300K at a time. It’s important that no sprays are used. Their interest in juice extends well beyond oranges. They also juice carrots, turmeric, beetroot, apples, and lemons, ginger roots and they mix them. They do this not just to achieve tantalising flavours but to capture the health benefits of these fruits and vegetables.

They also prepare chewy, sweet, tangy cakes and slices so popular from their own country but unfamiliar to Kiwis – Palmitas and Alfajor (sweet) and Empanadas – South American style Cornish pastries. One of these is a staple in Uruguay. For the citizens of that country, no day would be complete without have a slice of Palmita - for breakfast or maybe lunch or maybe supper. Will Kiwis also get hooked? We will have to wait and see. Try one when next you are near the ‘Tatifrutti’ van.

Back in Uruguay, Augustin was a commercial pilot and has tried many things since his arrival in New Zealand. For some time, creating jewellery was his passion. Then photography became his focus. The amazing scenery of this peninsula dazzled him and he used photography to capture some of these gorgeous scenes.

Tania was a laboratory quality control manager in Uruguay. Since arriving in New Zealand, she has been willing to take up whatever work there has been available – for instance, bee keeping, cleaning and staffing shops and restaurants. Tania and Augustin are also a catering team. Need someone to organize and serve food for a special event, weddings, anniversaries, reunions for instance? Give them a call. They can do it all - from canapes to desserts.

Their current focus on freshly squeezed juice has required a significant investment. Their most amazing piece of kit is the Squeezy (orange squeezing machine, behind them in the photo. Believe it or not this machine peels and splits the oranges before extracting the juice. It must be an amazing sight! However, it is not a novelty. It works and is at the heart of their freshly squeezed orange juice operation.

We welcome Tania and Augustin to the Coromandel Peninsula. We applaud their imagination and industry.

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