About Us | Back Country Cuisine

About Us

Back Country Cuisine

As the name says, Back Country Cuisine is food for the back country and the home of Back Country Cuisine is one of the southernmost cities in the world, Invercargill, right at the bottom of New Zealand.

It’s an ideal place to produce freeze dried food for the outdoors as our region is something of a gourmet food box, and we also have easy access to some of the best back country in the world with Rakiura/Stewart Island, Fiordland and Mt Aspiring National Parks all on our doorstep to test our meals in.


It was a burning question posed by military and outdoor enthusiasts back in the 1950’s that ultimately led to the creation of Back Country Cuisine.

How to carry everything in a pack needed for a full-on extended back country adventure, without compromising nutrition? Back then light-weight outdoors gear didn’t exist; everything was heavy and made to last for generations.

So, from the 1960’s onwards, there was a new focus on reducing the weight of outdoors gear, and it was Southland’s Alliance Freezing Company who pioneered the development of freeze-drying food in New Zealand to reduce its weight and extend its shelf life.

Early adopters of this new freeze dried technology were legitimate outdoor legends like Sir Peter Blake during the Whitbred Round The World race as well as supplying the New Zealand Army, and not long after that in 1998 the Back Country Cuisine brand was born.


Is to improve people's mental and physical wellbeing by reducing barriers to their participation in, and enjoyment of the outdoors.

Our freeze dried meals help do this by reducing:
  • The level of knowledge and/or preparation time required to feed yourself in the outdoors.
  • The amount of gear you need to cook food in the outdoors.
  • The weight of your pack and its effect on your physical performance in the outdoors.
  • The level of stress involved in selecting good food to eat in the outdoors.


  • The outdoors is a good place to be for everyone.
  • Mental and physical wellbeing from participation in the outdoors is more needed than ever.
  • Adventures can be big or small, it’s all relative. The most important thing is to have enjoyed the experience, even if that only comes with the benefit of hindsight (type 2 fun).
  • We believe the outdoors should be a guilt free place, so people can gain the maximum enjoyment and mental health benefits of going into the outdoors.
  • We don’t want to fuel a preoccupation with food and restrictive diets as it can result in negative impacts on a person’s mental health.
  • Dinning in the outdoors should be simple, stress free and enjoyable.
  • Taste and honesty matter. Back Country Cuisine will do its best to encourage people to get outdoors.