NZIFST - The New Zealand Institute of Food Science & Technology Inc.

Bookmark and Share

NZIFST Annual Conference
NZIFST Food Industry Training website
Career Profiles of some Food Technologists

Dick Hubbard
Dick Hubbard

Dick Hubbard is nationally known through the cereal products that bear his name. Hubbard Foods Ltd manufactures breakfast cereals both under the Hubbards brand and for supermarkets.

Between 2004 and 2007 he achieved even greater prominence as the Mayor of Auckland City.

Dick is a Food Technologist by training, and is one of the earliest graduates from the degree course in Food Technology (B.Tech (Food)) started at Massey University in the 1960's. He's been in the food industry his entire career.

His first job was as Research Scientist at NZ Co-op Dairy Co Ltd in Hamilton (now part of Fonterra), developing specialised powders for the baking trade.

2 years later, Dick and his wife Diana moved to the small Pacific nation of Niue, where he spent three years (1972-75) in a Project Manager role setting up a passionfruit and lime juice processing factory from scratch, as part of a United Nations and NZ Aid project.

He then spent 13 years in management roles at Tasti Products Ltd, firstly as Assistant General Manager, then as Chief Executive. During this time he grew the company's annual turnover from $1 million to $16 million, taking pride in building an entrepreneurial, profitable organisation with a diversified product range and sound management structure.

Dick and Diana set up Hubbard Foods in 1988. The company was originally called Winner Foods Ltd. which began life in a small factory in Onehunga (it had previously been a furniture factory, and before that, a potato chip factory). In the first three months, staff numbers rocketed to five, dropped back to two and since then have steadily climbed. In 1990, they decided to launch the first Hubbards branded cereals.

Over the years Hubbards cereals have featured strongly in the annual Food Awards competition for the best new products introduced onto the market. In 1992, "Fruitful Porridge" won first prize in the Bread and Cereal section and in 1994 "Berry Berry Nice" won three awards including that of runner-up to the best overall product produced onto the market in 1993.

In 1995, "Coco Morning" won the Premier Award and also won first prize in the Bread and Cereals section. In 1996 "Oranges of St Clements" won first prize in the Bread and Cereals section.

In 1997 "Bugs 'n Mud" won a Category Prize in the Bread and Cereal section and "Honey Bumbles" won a Highly Commended Prize.

Hubbards cereals have become a part of Kiwi culture. These days, Hubbard Foods has a turnover of $38 million, employs around 130 people, and is looking at the possibility of exporting the Hubbards brand overseas.

Hubbard Foods offers scholarships for students studying the Bachelor of Food Technology degree at Massey University. Dick is a past member of the Massey University Council, and Massey presented him with an Honorary Doctorate in 1999.

He has been associated with various industry organisations, is a past-President of the NZ Institute of Food Science and Technology (NZIFST), a past Chairman of the NZ Food & Grocery Council (FGC), and for 12 years was Chairman of the NZ Food Standards Committee, which advised the Minister of Health on all food legislation in New Zealand.

He has received several awards, including the the Order of New Zealand, the J.C. Andrews Award of Eminence in the food industry by NZIFST, and the Muriel Bell Award by the Nutrition Society. He holds the traditional Samoan Matai title of Galumalemana.

He is Founding Chairman of NZ Businesses for Social Responsibility, now The Sustainable Business Network, and has been a leading member of this movement. He is a Trustee of the National Parks Conservation Foundation and a past board member of the New Zealand Business Council for Sustainable Development, and is a member of the Board of directors of Outward Bound New Zealand.

Back to the top Back to the top
Real people talk about their jobs in food science, technology & engineering (courtesy of Futureintech:

Simon Loveday, Food Research Scientist for The Riddet Institute, Palmerston North.

Harriet Gibbs, Process Manager for multinational dairy processor Fonterra, Edendale, Southland.

Michelle Lucke, Process Improvement Technologist for prepared foods manufacturer, Heinz Watties, Tomoana, Hastings.

Ben Sutherland, Product Development Technologist for healthy snack manufacturer Mother Earth Foods, Auckland.

Anna Smith, Development Technologist for milk and dairy foods processor Fonterra Brands NZ.

Andrew Hutton, Product Development Technologist for prepared foods manufacturer Heinz Wattie's, Hastings.

More profiles of careers in food technology at Futureintech:

People who have made successful and interesting careers in food science, technology & engineering:

Kay McMath, a food scientist who has specialised in sensory evaluation, particularly in dairy products, becoming a leading judge at the NZ Ice Cream Awards, Massey Food Awards, and Juice & Beverage Awards.

Dr Chris Bloore, a food engineer specialising in milkpowder production, but also heavily involved in process automation and project management.

Dick Hubbard, an early food technology graduate who went on to become a household name, through his Hubbards range of breakfast cereals, and as mayor of our largest city.