Com­mu­nity Im­pact Award and Auck­land Coun­cil Mega Ef­fi­ciency Im­pact Award Win­ner

Element - - Sustainable Businesses -

Win­ner: Kai­bosh Food Res­cue

De­pend­ing on which study you read, any­where be­tween 40 to 70 per cent of food ends up wasted, if not in land­fills.

Welling­ton not-for-profit Kai­bosh is do­ing some­thing about that, pick­ing up ex­cess or un­sold food from about 30 firms around the city and dis­tribut­ing it to a sim­i­lar num­ber of or­gan­i­sa­tions and char­i­ties.

“It all comes down to lo­gis­tics. The sup­ply chain puts too much em­pha­sis on the sales point so there are hideous amounts of waste food from the mod­ern way we con­sume,” says Kai­bosh chair Ge­orge Lang­lands.

Kai­bosh started in 2008 with a phone call to the Welling­ton Women’s Refuge from gourmet lunch­maker Wish­bone offering left­over meals.

The call was fielded by vol­un­teer Robyn Lang­lands, who agreed to pick them up when she col­lected Ge­orge from work.

“There’s this weird thing with con­sumer psy­chol­ogy where peo­ple don’t like buy­ing fresh food on the day it ex­pires, so they were throw­ing out food at the end of the day that, even if you were go­ing on the best be­fore date, was good for consumption for an­other 24 hours,” Ge­orge Lang­lands says.

He ex­pected to col­lect a shop­ping bag of sand­wiches, but got two bin lin­ers of meals, still in their plas­tic cases.

“It was way more than they needed at the refuge so we dropped off some at the Welling­ton City Mis­sion and other places, and we did that for the next couple of months.

That’s when they got se­ri­ous, rais­ing funds, hir­ing space with chillers, and build­ing a team of paid staff as well as vol­un­teers to en­sure food could be col­lected re­li­ably, sorted for safety and dis­trib­uted. “Peo­ple don’t want to throw food away. “We keep pre­cise records on the weight and type of food that we sup­ply back to them, so we may be do­ing our­selves out of some sand­wiches, but Wish­bone as a re­sult of us feed­ing back is able to man­age its sup­ply chain bet­ter.”

Ph ot o: M ik e H ey do n

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