Good Bugs 

Fermented foods

At the market: Fortnightly Sundays in the Main Hall

Contact: Daniel Verry

Call/text: 021 114 8020  



Instagram: @goodbugsnz

Facebook: @GoodBugsNZ

Daniel's Story

Daniel Verry can be found at Grey Lynn Farmers Market on Sunday mornings, giving visitors a chance to try their tasty range of fermented foods.

Where did you grow up?

On a sheep and beef farm in Piopio, enjoying country life in the King Country.

Did you ever aspire to carry on the farming tradition?

No, I am very happy that my cousin, who didn’t grow up on a farm, has the passion and dedication to take on the family farm. But I still enjoy visiting and helping out with docking and other farm chores.

When did you leave Piopio?

For university - I studied Agribusiness at Massey in Palmerston North. Then I got a finance job in Wellington.

How was life in Wellington?

Wellington was great fun – I had a tight group of friends from Massey. I loved skiing and snowboarding, and anything outdoor-focused, plus the nightlife. I met Marea there when I got back from a season working as a snowboard instructor, on snowfields in the US. My uni friends had roped her into their women’s cricket team while I was in the States.

Was that the end of your travels?

Not at all - the following year we both spent a ski season in the USA on our way for a traditional Kiwi OE in London and Europe. We spent our last 5 months exploring Europe in an old UK postal van.

What brought you home?

Marea was pregnant with our first child so we moved to Hamilton to be close to family.

So, you settled in Hamilton

Yes, I got a job with Fonterra lasting 14 years – 8 years working on product costings and 6 years on revenue forecasting. Marea had intended to take a break from paid work but two months before our son was born she got offered her ideal GIS role for DOC.

None of this sounds like a business making fermented food

Marea has always had a passion for natural unprocessed foods. She was always fermenting foods at home – foods like sauerkraut, kimchi, kombucha, sourdough, and kefir.  She got so experienced that she taught others how to ferment foods. And, in 2017, that led to the birth of GoodBugs when Marea and a couple of friends making sauerkraut to sell at our local farmers market.

Why fermented foods?

They are very good for health. The fermentation process has no oxygen, so it encourages lactobacillus bacteria. These are the good bacteria that thrive naturally in our gut and support good health. We always have sauerkraut and / or kimchi on our dinner table, adding it as a condiment.

Do you add the bacteria?

No – we use a wild fermentation that encourages the wild bacteria to eat the natural sugars in the vegetables.

Your business is much bigger than that now

Yes – we both work full-time on our family business. Even our four children help with labelling and washing jars when they haven’t got other commitments. And our weekends revolve around selling our products at farmers markets – Hamilton, Cambridge, Tauranga, Parnell, and Grey Lynn.

What is your most popular product?

Honey mustard sauerkraut – it’s a good gateway sauerkraut for people who aren’t used to the taste. We’ve sweetened it up with honey, but it is still full of the live probiotic goodness. My favourite is the Golden Kraut that has orange, turmeric, and ginger. Purists can always eat our Zuurkool which is simple traditional sauerkraut.  Zuurkool is Dutch for sauerkraut – a tribute to one of the GoodBugs founding friends and her Dutch heritage. Our Kimchi is also popular for having the “right amount of spice for the Kiwi palate”. Kimchi is the Korean cousin of Sauerkraut, literally meaning spicy fermented vegetables. Our most unique offering is the fermented pesto – it has a lovely tang.


Why are farmers markets important?

Sauerkraut is an unfamiliar food for many Kiwis. They are often curious because they have heard about sauerkraut but might not have had a chance to try it.  We give them a chance to ask questions and try different versions so they can find one that suits their tastes.

As published in Ponsonby News : March 2024