Peter Leitch (businessman)
|Sir Peter Leitch
Leitch in 2015
|Born||Peter Charles Leitch
8 May 1944
Wellington, New Zealand
|Other names||The Mad Butcher|
|Known for||"The Mad Butcher" butchery chain, charity and fundraising work, and promotion of rugby league|
|Spouse(s)||Janice (c. 1968 - present)|
Sir Peter Charles Leitch KNZM QSM (born 8 May 1944), also known as The Mad Butcher, is a New Zealand businessman. Although well known in New Zealand for the chain of butcheries he founded and is currently the brand ambassador of, Leitch is arguably just as well known for his charity, fundraising work and his promotion of rugby league.
Born in Wellington, he left school at age 15 on account of dyslexia to work as a newspaper boy. He gained a job as a butcher's apprentice in a Seatoun butchery at the age of 16, before later moving to Auckland.
In 1971, he opened a butchery in Rosella Road, Mangere East. When a friend suggested a marketing gimmick for his radio advertising, Leitch recalled an incident at a pub in which someone referred to him as "that f**king mad butcher", hence his butchery became "the home of the Mad Butcher". In 2012, "The Mad Butcher" butchery chain had 36 stores from Whangarei to Dunedin.
Leitch is known for his work for charity and for his enthusiastic support of New Zealand rugby league, the Mangere East Hawks and the Warriors, which has increased the sport's profile in New Zealand. He managed the Kiwi's victorious Tri-Nations campaign in late 2005. In recognition of his support of the Warriors the club have retired the #19 jersey in his honour. The Mad Butcher Suburban Newspapers Community Trust is a fundraising vehicle he helped create to benefit charities. Leitch is chairman of the trust, and the deputy chairman is David Penny, general manager of Fairfax Media Suburban Newspapers Auckland. He has also fundraised for Allergy New Zealand, Diabetes Auckland, the Prostate Cancer Foundation and Macular Degeneration New Zealand.
He was voted the 41st most influential New Zealander by Listener Magazine in 2004. He has a memorable way of talking, not unlike an auctioneer, that has caused various spoofs of 'The Mad Butcher' that included the Radio Hauraki character 'The Bad Mutcher' on the Morning Pirates and Pulp Sport formerly had a character named 'The Mad Mad Butcher'. In his frequent radio advertisements, his voice rises to put the major stress and volume on the 99 cents which ends the price of each meat item advertised.
In the Queen's Birthday Honours 1991 Leitch was awarded the Queen's Service Medal for community service. In the New Year Honours 2010 Leitch was appointed as a Knight Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to business and philanthropy.
Later that year he featured on the TV One programme This is Your Life. In 2008, Leitch released his autobiography "What a Ride, Mate!: the Life and Times of the Mad Butcher", co-authored with Phil Gifford.
In January 2017, a Māori resident of Waiheke Island posted a video on Facebook claiming that Leitch had racially abused her while she was on a wine tasting tour on the island. Leitch agreed that during the exchange he told her that Waiheke "is a white man's island also", but says his comments were misinterpreted and that it was merely banter. After initially saying that Leitch was the "least racist person I know", New Zealand Race Relations Commissioner Susan Devoy later condemned Leitch's comments as casual racism.
- "About the Mad Butcher". The Mad Butcher. Archived from the original on 22 August 2013.
- "Success with dyslexia". The New Zealand Herald. 19 December 2010. Retrieved 19 July 2013.
- Mad Butcher Website, accessed 7 June 2010.
- Madbutcher.co.nz: Community, accessed 7 June 2010.
- "Looking out for the community". North Shore Times. 3 May 2011. Retrieved 2 November 2011.
- New Zealand Listener: The Listener 2004 Power List, accessed 7 June 2010.
- "Queen's Birthday Honours 1991" (1 July 1991) 98 New Zealand Gazette 2191 at 2193.
- "Queen's Birthday Honours 2010" (6 July 2010) 79 New Zealand Gazette 2153.
- "Mad Butcher wanted to end it all". Sunday News. 3 May 2008. Retrieved 14 January 2017.
- "Sir Peter Leitch takes over as NZRL patron". Stuff.co.nz. NZPA. 28 March 2011. Retrieved 2 November 2011.
- "Mad Butcher Sir Peter Leitch says Waiheke Island comments weren't racist but 'misinterpreted' after woman's video goes viral". New Zealand Herald. 4 January 2017. ISSN 1170-0777. Retrieved 8 January 2017.
- "Sir Peter Leitch's 'banter' denial rejected by family". Radio New Zealand. 4 January 2017. Retrieved 14 January 2017.
- "Mad Butcher row: Dame Susan Devoy changes stance". New Zealand Herald. 5 January 2017. Retrieved 14 January 2017.
- Mad Butcher Website
- Sir Peter Leitch's Personal Website
- Hawkes Bay Today (2006): Mad Butcher tells fans of Warriors: Get over it, accessed 7 June 2010.
- Academy Publishing: Maddening Simple Philosophy, accessed 7 June 2010.
- Howick and Pakuranga Times: The Times Interview - Peter Leitch, Explain Yourself to Dean Wedlake, accessed 7 June 2010.