We are system biologists and environment management specialists. We began our careers as graduates from Massey University working in the research sector, the chemical sector and for government agencies. Since then we’ve personally invested in creating and developing environmentally sound products that recognise the need to ensure the world’s expanding population has access to healthy food. This was recognised in 2013 when our chief scientist and founder was nominated by scientific peers in the biotechnology individual section of the World Technology Awards.

About Us

Zest Biotech provides innovative products to enable optimal plant health and livestock performance. Our products have been used by growers and farmers across New Zealand for more than 10 years.

 

We know that every New Zealander has a strong desire to protect and nurture the land we live and work on. We also understand your livelihood depends on the productivity of your land. At Zest Biotech we design products to enable Kiwi farmers and growers to produce high quality produce, sustainably.

We are system biologists and environment management specialists. We began our careers as graduates from Massey University working in the research sector, the chemical sector and for government agencies.

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In 2015 our peers in the biosciences community recognised our achievements and nominated our chief scientist and founder, Nathan Balasingham, for the prestigious Biotechnologist of the Year Award.

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We’ve personally invested in creating and developing environmentally sound products that respond to the need to ensure the world’s expanding population has access to healthy food.

Our efforts were recognised in 2013 when chief scientist and founder Nathan Balasingham was nominated by scientific peers in the biotechnology individual section of the World Technology Awards.

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The Research and Development arm of Zest (Indigo Limited) was also a finalist in the PricewaterhouseCoopers New Zealand Hi-Tech Awards 2007


Our Leadership Team

We pride ourselves on being an accessible, family run company. If you would like to talk to us or meet with us on your farm or orchard please call or email us anytime. We’re always happy to talk to you.

 

Nathan Balasingham

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  • Founder of Zest Biotech and inventor of the Zest family of products

  • Master of Horticultural Science (Hons.1) degree from Massey University

  • Over 40 years experience in crop biotechnology

Graduating from Massey University in 1974, Nathan carried out research on plant lipids when employed as a scientist at DSIR where he worked as an associate with Roger Slack, the discoverer of the C-4 photosynthetic pathway.

Nathan then went on to work for multinationals as a Research and Market Development Executive for Bayer and BASF.

Nathan has successfully taken many R&D projects from concept to commercial success.

In 1991 Nathan developed, patented and commercialised an innovative product for the Kiwifruit Industry, “Kiwi Crush”. The frozen juice concentrate went on to win the premier Food Industry Award (1992), the National Heart Foundation award and the Walker Datavision Non-Alcoholic Beverages Award.

In 2015 Nathan was a nominee for the NZBio Biotechnologist of the Year.

Nathan has a passion for science and an incredible depth of knowledge that has enabled him to develop and commercialise technologies that are unique and groundbreaking. Nathan would like to see this technology embraced by New Zealanders so we can lead the rest of the world and thrive as a wealthy and truly clean, green nation.

 

Usha Amaranathan

  • Chief Operating Officer, Zest Biotech

  • BSc (Ecology and Zoology), Master of Applied Science (Hons.), Massey University

  • Environmental management specialist

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Also a Massey University graduate, Usha began her career working for MPI (MAF). Succumbing to the urge to embark on an OE, Usha went on to carry out predator research work in Limpopo Provence, South Africa. Usha then moved to London, England where she worked for 6 years in Environmental Regulation – coordinating pollution response in some of London’s most iconic locations and, later, charged with regulating some of the ‘worst of the worst’ offenders in greater London. This was an eye opener and an education.

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Usha has a wealth of experience working through regulatory constraints and sustainability issues but, more importantly, she has a passion for the environment. Usha’s ancestors landed on New Zealand’s shores in the 1860’s and were strongly tied to the land: as sheep farmers and drovers and, later, orchardists in the Gisborne area. This history has instilled a deep connection and understanding of the challenges and joys of living and working on the land.

Coupled with a desire to protect New Zealand’s unique ecology, Usha is keenly aware that New Zealand’s primary industries need tools to perform in the 21st century. Usha is committed to ensuring Zest Biotech arms farmers and growers with the knowledge and tools they need to produce the best products in the world, sustainably.


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