Expo in­spires stu­dents

Northern News - - MO­TOR­ING - AN­NETTE LAM­BLY

More than 250 stu­dents, teach­ers, fam­ily and com­mu­nity mem­bers hit the road in the Far North, Kaipara and Whangarei re­cently to learn about en­vi­ron­men­tally sus­tain­able lo­cal busi­nesses at this year’s En­vi­roschools re­gional expo.

Re­gional coun­cil­lor Penny Smart says ex­pos have been held yearly for about a decade and al­ways pro­vide ex­cit­ing, hands-on learning ex­pe­ri­ences for par­tic­i­pants.

She says each tour fea­tured vis­its to four lo­cal em­ploy­ers in each district.

While very di­verse busi­nesses, all shared a com­mon pas­sion for op­er­at­ing in a sus­tain­able man­ner which ben­e­fited their lo­cal com­mu­ni­ties, both en­vi­ron­men­tally and so­cially.

Last week’s Far North tour in­cluded trips to Whanau Meats (a fam­ily-owned butcher shop and home kill pro­ces­sor), Mana Kai Honey (honey, bee­keep­ing and pol­li­na­tion), Due North (hand­crafted pre­serves) and Apatu Aqua (which catches and sells fresh and smoked fish).

Kaipara’s tour in­cluded Chapel Olive Oil, Or­ganic Dairy Hub, Ze­phyr Oys­ters and Te Rata Fam­ily Farm.

The fi­nal tour, in the Whangarei district took in Maun­gat­a­pere Ber­ries, Tamco, The Good Eggs and The Goat Farm. There are more than 90 schools and kinder­gartens in the pro­gramme.

Joel Rikona, of Coop­ers Beach-based Apatu Aqua, shows freshly smoked mul­let to Caolan Price and Jay­den Schrafft dur­ing the En­vi­roschools Expo.

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