In Auckland this month, two teams of AIP (Australian Institute of Packaging) members helped out at KiwiHarvest, the perishable food rescuers who collect good food before it goes to waste, distributing it to those in need.
The AIP volunteers packed 2175kgs of potatoes and carrots into 145x15kg bags. The malt bags KiwiHarvest uses come from boutique breweries which saves them from going to waste.
Nerida Kelton, executive director of the AIP says the work forms part of the organisation’s commitment to fighting food waste. She says, “Foodbanks receive the bags to distribute for community meals such as Everybody Eats; for charities like Shine Women’s Refuge; for individual families; and for schools. It covers recipients from Orewa to Pukekohe.”
Each month, KiwiHarvest delivers over 60,000kgs of food to 220 charities nationally. It works to change the situation where New Zealand industry throws away 103,000 tonnes of food is thrown every year. Kelton says, “KiwiHarvest reduces the negative impacts of food waste on the environment by redistributing excess food, helping to create lasting positive social change by nourishing those in need.
She says the AIP will offer more volunteer days throughout the year for NZ industry. She adds, “You can join our AIP KiwiHarvest volunteer programme; either as an individual, with your staff and colleagues, or even with your families. The AIP will work directly with KiwiHarvest to book in some days where our volunteers can visit the Ellerslie warehouse and help pick and pack fresh vegetables into sacks. The day starts with a formal introduction on how KiwiHarvest works and information on their charity partners.”