New Zealand Made Day encourages Kiwis to buy local

Saturday is New Zealand Made Day, encouraging Kiwis to buy local.

And with businesses bearing the brunt of COVID-19, it's a message being pushed ahead of the Christmas season.

It's all go at weekly markets where supporting local is paramount.

"I'm a local and it's great to support local businesses where you can," one person told Newshub.

And vendors notice the support. Hasan Chahoud's artisan soaps are made in his converted garage.

"When they come to know it's made locally they feel more great about it," he says.

And this year, with COVID-19 locking down the country it's never been more important.

"Online sales were probably double or three times more before the lockdown," Chahoud says.

The same went for Geraldine Pennell's homemade masks.

"We did 700 in two weeks. I sold out on the website in two hours and it's just been crazy," she says.

Ryan Jennings, chief executive of Buy NZ Made, says there's been a massive shift towards supporting New Zealand businesses.

"Kiwis voted with their wallets and said we want to support local businesses - people we know," he says.

New Zealand Made Day encourages people to buy at least one local item and with great markets open there's plenty to choose from.

"[It's] a great opportunity to get out there and getting some things you need for Christmas," Jennings says.

Hoping this year's stocking stuffers will be made right here at home.