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Heartland Potato Chips - Bowan family

From left, James, Raymond, Adrienne and Charlotte Bowan from Heartland Chips in Timaru.

Raymond Bowan fell in love with potato farming at the age of 17. Wife Adrienne laughs that it's not potato farming her husband fell in love with, but potatoes in all their forms - mashed, baked, roasted, boiled baby potatoes (without butter so not to interfere with the taste) and of course as chips.

Raymond Bowan's passion for potatoes and chips has seen Heartland Potato Chips take on the big boys at their own game. With its fifth birthday looming, changes are afoot at the helm but the recipe for success remains the same.

The New Zealand based company, which the Bowans describe as something of a David and Goliath story, has always been a family oriented business. It was started to sustain a family business and it remains central to family, with daughter Charlotte stepping into the role of general manager.

The company has just launched a new product range - flat cut chips (their "standard" product is a crinkle cut chip), and has an 8 per cent market share. That might not seem like much, but Heartland has considerably less than 8 per cent of the chip product on the shelf. Heartland chips also sell better off-promotion than any other chip in New Zealand.