Whenua Māori

Whānau development through land is a key focus for Te Puni Kōkiri. It supports Māori landowners, trustees and whānau to realise their aspirations, whether they be social, cultural, environmental or economic.

Matuaokore Ahuwhenua Trustee, Frances Stokes and relation Jayden Hokianga on their whenua just north of Tūranganui ā-Kiwa/Gisborne. Photo by Josie McClutchie.

Whenua Advisory Services 

Dedicated staff across Te Tai Tokerau (Northland) Waiariki (Bay of Plenty) and Te Tairāwhiti (East Coast) can provide on-the-ground advice and support for Māori freehold land owners.

The role of the service is to provide specialised and customised support that empowers Māori landowners to move forward on their development journey.

To find out more, contact your local Te Puni Kōkiri office.

Tupu.nz website

Tupu.nz is a one-stop shop for information about whenua Māori. You can access tool, resources and reports about Māori land blocks at www.tupu.nz. The website also explores ways you can better connect, look after and develop your whenua.

Te Ture Whenua Whenua Māori Act

Te Ture Whenua Maori Act 1993 is the governing legislation for Māori land, upholding the protection of whenua for future generations while supporting its current use and development.

Find out more about the Act.

Amendments to Te Ture Whenua Māori Act 1993

In August 2020, the Government passed Te Ture Whenua Māori (Succession, Dispute Resolution, and Related Matters) Amendment Act to make it easier for Māori land owners to connect with and use their whenua. The changes come into force on 6 February 2021.

For an overview of these changes, see the summary booklet.

Proposed changes to the rating of Māori land

The Local Government (Rating of Whenua Māori) Amendment Bill was introduced into Parliament in February 2020. The proposed changes are a major step forward in reducing the rating barriers for owners of Māori freehold land and encouraging the greater use, occupation and development of whenua Māori.

To keep up to date with the Bill’s progress, go here.

Find out more information about the key changes here.

Ahuwhenua Trophy 

The Ahuwhenua Trophy celebrates excellence in Māori farming. Te Puni Kōkiri is the proud platinum sponsor of this prestigious award which was established by Sir Apirana Ngata and Governor-General Lord Bledisloe in 1933.

Find out more information on the Ahuwhenua Trophy here.

Whenua Māori Fund

With the support of the Whenua Māori Fund, whānau Māori are exploring and fulfilling their aspirations for Māori freehold land. The Fund is supporting Māori land owners to improve their existing operations, explore new opportunities for their land or diversify.

To find out more, go to the Whenua Māori Fund page


Our Whenua Māori stories

Keeping Mitimiti going one tree at a time

A collective of Māori land trusts in the north have collaborated with Te Puni Kōkiri and other partners to enhance their future in forestry and maximise the returns on their Māori freehold land. Their efforts are creating jobs for locals in small Far North settlements and setting an example for other Māori landowners interested in forestry. With high rates of Māori land underperforming, this is an example of how the Whenua Māori Programme can assist Māori landowners to develop their land. Read more

A man on a mission to bring people together

This projects links up Te Tai Hauāuru Iwi and Māori land owners with local and central government schemes and it identifies joint land development opportunities among local Māori land owners. This is a small-scale example of what could happen when the Whenua Māori Programme is up-and-running. Read more

Honeys of Te Urewera only the start

With the support of Te Puni Kōkiri, the Tūhoe Tuawhenua Trust has established and developed its Manawa Honey business deep in the Ruatāhuna Valley. The successful enterprise provides rewarewa, tāwari and mānuka honey to around 150 stores around the country. While there business is thriving, the Trust is keen to expand its business and investigate other ways to use their land. The Whenua Māori Programme could potentially assist this Trust in fulfilling its aspirations. Read more

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