Villa Maria wins Supreme Green Ribbon Award

Green Ribbon Award logo

Environment Minister Amy Adams has tonight announced that Auckland-based winery Villa Maria Estate is the Supreme Winner of the Green Ribbon Awards.

The award was presented to Villa Maria Estate at a ceremony hosted by Ms Adams at Parliament tonight. A further twelve Green Ribbon Awards category winners from around the country were also announced.

"Villa Maria is dedicated to minimising the environmental impact of its business and has demonstrated that environmental best-practice can boost profitability and be part of everyday business.

“The winery takes a holistic approach to environmental best practice, implementing a variety of effective initiatives nationwide. These range from growing grapes organically through to projects that reduce the environmental effects of operations in the processing plant.

“Specific initiatives include reducing fungicide and pesticide applications, energy conservation, and a comprehensive package of emissions-reduction projects.”

The Green Ribbon Awards recognise the outstanding contributions made by organisations, businesses and communities to protecting and enhancing New Zealand’s environment, Ms Adams says.

The awards had more than 280 entries this year, an increase of 68 on last year, which shows that more New Zealanders are taking action to improve the environment.

The finalists covered areas such as improving water and air quality, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, reducing waste, and boosting biodiversity by protecting coasts and oceans.

“Volunteers play a significant role in all of this work, and the awards give them much-deserved public recognition, while providing others with ideas on how to get their initiatives off the ground.”

Increasing the number of native plants, eliminating introduced pests like possums and stoats, and helping native birds and fish re-establish themselves in streams and on farmland were some of the success stories of the volunteer and community groups that won Green Ribbon Awards this year.

2012 Green Ribbon Award Winners

Protecting our biodiversity: Moehau Environment Group, with Meridian Energy (Coromandel)

Reducing our greenhouse gas emissions: carboNZero Holdings (Auckland)

Caring for our water: Waiau Trust – River Habitat Restoration (Invercargill)

Minimising our waste: Go Bamboo (Gisborne)

Improving our air quality: Nelson City Council (Nelson)

Protecting our coasts and oceans: West Coast Blue Penguin Trust (West Coast)

Communication and education: Hurunui College – Nina Valley Restoration Group (Canterbury)

Community leadership: Te Ara Kakariki – Greenway Canterbury Trust (Canterbury)

Small business leadership: Celcius Coffee (Wellington)

Large business leadership: Villa Maria Estate (Auckland)

Public sector leadership: Nelson City Council (Nelson)

Green economy: Yealands Estate (Marlborough)

Supreme Award Winner: Villa Maria Estate (Auckland)

Unpackit Awards too close to call

Unpackit Awards 2012 website address logo

Competition in the Unpackit Awards is red hot this year, with the leaders neck and neck for both the Best and Worst Packaging Awards.

Unpackit spokesperson Gina Dempster said this year’s Awards are going to come down to the wire when voting closes at midnight on Friday 1st June.

“People can be sure their vote is really going to count, because it’s just so close this year. We’re aiming for 10,000 votes, so we hope anyone who cares about the environment will take a minute to go to www.unpackit.org and put their vote in.”

Only eight votes separates the two leaders in the Worst Packaging Award, even though nearly 7,000 votes have been cast online.

“Individually wrapped prunes are ahead in the Worst Packaging Award by a whisker, but the plastic wrapped veggies on a meat-tray are in hot pursuit,” said Ms Dempster.

“In the Best Packaging Award, Bin Inn stores, where customers can take their own packaging to refill, have surged ahead in the last week to take the lead.

“It’s really too close to call though, with the compostable take-away container made from Potatopak, and the Nude Food Mover lunch-boxes hot on their heels.”

Ms Dempster said at least two of the finalists in the 2011 Worst Packaging Award had improved their packaging after the awards.

“People always tell us that they are frustrated by ridiculous over-packaging. Voting in the Unpackit Awards helps show companies that people do care about packaging and its impact on the environment.”

People can vote for the packaging which they think is the best and worst for the environment at www.unpackit.org. There are eight finalists in the Best Award and eight finalists in the Worst Award, chosen from over 200 public nominations.

Gina Dempster, Unpackit spokesperson (03) 443 8608 x9, 027 443 7116, gina@wanakawastebusters.co.nz

About Smartpackaging and the Unpackit Awards
The Unpackit Packaging Awards 2012 and Smart Packaging Business Workshops are run by Wanaka Wastebusters to encourage New Zealanders to choose smart packaging and raise awareness about the issue of packaging waste.
www.smartpackaging.org.nz
www.unpackit.org
The project has received financial support from the Waste Minimisation Fund, administered by the Ministry for the Environment. The Ministry for the Environment does not necessarily endorse or support the content of this press release.

About Wanaka Wastebusters
Wanaka Wastebusters is a community enterprise based in Wanaka, which employs 20 people. Our mission is to increase resource recovery by providing innovative solutions and Education for Sustainability.

Pumpkin Gnocchi [recipe]

A recipe by Nicola Galloway

Fresh2U Organic Food Delivery, Nelson, NZ

It does take a little time to make gnocchi but well worth it. Rolling into a long cylinder rather than the traditional shaping with a fork greatly reduces the time. It is fun to get kids involved with making gnocchi too.

Ingredients

  • Approx. 1kg pumpkin
  • 2 free-range eggs
  • Generous handful of freshly grated parmesan
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • Finely ground pepper
  • Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
  • Approx 1-2 cups flour (this will depend on the moisture of the pumpkin)

Cook the pumpkin either by boiling or roasting. If roasting make sure not to colour the pumpkin too much as it will taint the gnocchi. Once the pumpkin is soft remove the skin and mash thoroughly to remove any lumps.

Add the eggs, parmesan and salt & pepper.

Gradually add enough flour to make a workable dough. Tip onto a floured bench and knead by folding the dough onto itself. Sprinkle flour over the dough as needed until it is dry enough to handle but still holds together well when rolled.

Divide the dough into 6-8 balls and roll into long 1cm thick cylinders then cut into 2cm lengths. Make sure to keep the gnocchi well-floured at all times to prevent them sticking together.

To cook, bring a large pot of water to a rapid boil. Add a teaspoon of salt (it is important the gnocchi cooking water is well seasoned otherwise the end result can be bland even if the sauce is well flavoured). Cook the gnocchi in batches for 2-3 minutes until they rise to the surface.

Drain well in a colander and drizzle with olive oil. Serve with tomato pasta sauce or simply with olive oil and crispy sage leaves.

To make crispy sage:

Heat 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil over a low to medium heat. Once hot (you can test this by flicking a few drops of water onto the oil, if it is hot it will crackle and sizzle) add whole sage leaves to the oil.

They will cook quickly so you will need to work fast, using tongs to turn the leaves over until they are evenly golden. Remove onto kitchen paper then
scatter over the gnocchi.

Find more of Nicola’s recipes and healthy food ideas on www.nicolagalloway.com
Also courtesy of www.fresh2u.co.nz Organic Food Delivery, Nelson.

Forest & Bird welcomes victory for Mokihinui River

Mokihinui saved - image credit Forest & Bird

Forest & Bird media release 22 May 2012 – Wellington

Forest & Bird welcomes Meridian Energy’s announcement that it will abandon its plan to dam the West Coast’s wild and scenic Mokihinui River. “This is a great victory for conservation, and a courageous decision by Meridian,” Forest & Bird Forest & Bird Advocacy Manager Kevin Hackwell says.

“We are pleased that Meridian has made the right decision for a very special part of the West Coast, and for the future sustainability of the coast and New Zealand.”

Forest & Bird Top of the South Field Officer Debs Martin says: “The Mokihinui is a wonderful wild river that is home to endangered blue ducks, eels and native fish. The forested river valley supports many native animals, including kiwi and bats.

“This is one of New Zealand’s largest and most pristine wild rivers, and it was critical for Forest & Bird that we save this from damming. This dam would have flooded the greatest area of conservation land in New Zealand.”

Kevin Hackwell says the decision will be good for the long-term economy of the West Coast. The Mokihinui dam would have been remotely operated from outside West Coast so the area’s economy would have had a merely temporary boost during construction. “The future is in adventure and eco-tourism, and a cycleway along part of the Mokihinui is already being built.”

We hope this decision will be the end of big hydro proposals on the last of our remaining wild rivers, he says.

Forest & Bird says it is now time to properly protect the Mokihinui River by adding it to neighbouring Kahurangi National Park. “We are keen to avoid future conflicts over high-value publicly owned land that is stewardship, or essentially unclassified, land,” Debs Martin says.

Forest & Bird President Andrew Cutler says this is great news for the thousands of members and supporters of Forest & Bird, and thousands of other New Zealanders who have given time and money to fight this dam proposal.

“It’s great to see that grass roots campaigns can still win against developments backed by huge businesses. That gives us confidence as we now refocus on stopping the open-cast mining of the unique Denniston Plateau on the West Coast by an Australian mining company.”

Contacts:

Forest & Bird Top of the South Field Officer Debs Martin, 03 989 3355, 027 684 0599

Forest & Bird Advocacy Manager Kevin Hackwell, 04 801 2215, 021 227 8420

Smartpackaging workshop for Auckland businesses

Wanaka Wastebusters will be running a Smart Packaging Business Workshop in Auckland on Thursday 17th May, in partnership with the Sustainable Business Network.

The workshop will help businesses add value to their brand by choosing smart packaging which has less impact on the environment.

Real packaging challenges faced by businesses will be addressed during the workshop, and attendees will have a chance to come up with their own solutions during a break-out session.

The guest speaker at the workshop will be Janet Clendon, Global Packaging Manager for Zespri. She will talk about Zespri’s sustainable packaging strategy and how they are working across their supply chain to adopt packaging solutions that align with their strategy.

    Workshop leader Sophie Ward said the workshop will include practical tips and the research on

  • Packaging materials and end-of-life solutions
  • Which materials are most likely to be recycled
  • Myth-busting and green claims
  • What consumers want from packaging.

“In New Zealand, we create 172kg of packaging waste per person every year, and throw 72kg of packaging per person into the rubbish,” she said. “It’s time we worked together to reduce the amount of packaging which goes into the landfill.”

“We encourage businesses to choose minimal packaging which can be recycled or composted, but we know it’s not going to happen overnight. The workshop will give businesses balanced information which will save them time and money, and help strengthen their brands.”

The Smart Packaging workshops are being run in four cities as part of the Unpackit Packaging Awards project. The Awards were set up in 2010 to find the Best and Worst packaging sold in New Zealand. Voting for the Awards is open until 1st June at www.unpackit.org

“Many of the nominations for Unpackit’s Worst Packaging Award this year were for “green” businesses whose packaging did not live up to their product,” said Ms Ward. “Consumers are getting more and more savvy when it comes to environmental claims. They expect to see consistency through the whole production process, including packaging.”

Ms Ward said the recent Campbell Live programmes on the Honest Water Eco-Bottle and the Fair Go programme on degradable bags had shown that companies need to understand the full life cycle of the packaging materials they choose to use.

“It’s a real challenge for businesses, because it can get quite technical. We’re aiming to give businesses a good grounding in the issues, to help them make smart packaging choices.”

Businesses can register for the Smartpackaging workshop at www.smartpackaging.org.nz and can send their packaging challenges to sophie@wanakawastebusters.co.nz

Workshop cost: $45 SBN members, $90 non-members

Auckland Workshop Details
8:00-10:00am
Rangitoto 3
Viaduct Events Centre
Viaduct Harbour

Take A Walk On The Wildside

Wildside Getaway Ruapehu

Building a self-sufficient eco-lodge in the heart of the bush: from mud to mod-cons.

The creation of Wildside Getaway all started with a walk in the bush with our six month old son in a backpack, in the steep hill country surrounding the Central Plateau. The property had stunning views towards both the Whanganui River Valley on the one side and the volcanic peaks of Mounts Ruapehu and Ngaruhoe on the other.

Read the rest of this great article on Bookabach’s bachchat – Stories – Take A Walk On The Wildside and see their listing on Ecofind.

It’s Business Time for Bret Mckenzie with Fair Trade And Oxfam

Bret McKenzie

Press Release: Oxfam

Oxfam has extended this year’s Fair Trade Me celebrity auctions for a very special one-off auction with one half of New Zealand’s fourth most popular folk-parody duo, Oscar-winner and FIGWIT himself, Bret McKenzie. The auction launches today on Trade Me and coincides with the start of Fair Trade Fortnight.

McKenzie has generously placed himself on the auction block for Oxfam and the highest bidder will not only receive a guitar signed by Bret and his Flight of the Conchords partner Jemaine Clement, but also a sit down and a chat with Bret over a fair trade cuppa in Wellington. Sounds like a fair trade to us!

The auction follows on from the successful Fair Trade Me auctions in April that saw Kiwis bidding on Coffee Break dates with Sir Graham Henry, actors Shane Cortese and Michelle Langstone, Starfish fashion designer Laurie Foon and restaurateur Steve Logan. The auctions have been held in conjunction with Oxfam’s Biggest Coffee Break to help raise awareness of fair trade as well as funds for Oxfam’s work with communities throughout the developing world.

“Buying Fairtrade products is a simple way of making the world a better place. So go and buy them now. Stop what you’re doing and buy some Fairtrade goods,” said McKenzie.

“Move away from the computer. Stand up. Put some clothes on and go to the shops and get some Fairtrade stuff. What’s wrong with you? Why are you still reading this? Are you addicted to reading? Get a friend to help you stop reading. Meet them at a cafe and have a cup of Fairtrade coffee and talk about your reading addiction. Get moving. Hurry, before it’s too late to make the world a better place.”

McKenzie is right: buying fair trade is an effective way for shoppers to help growers work their way out of poverty—through better prices, decent working conditions, environmentally sustainable farming methods and investment in local community development.

Last year 40,000 New Zealanders celebrated fair trade by taking part in Oxfam’s Biggest Coffee Break, and this year has seen a record number of people, schools and workplaces sign up to host. All proceeds from the auctions and Coffee Breaks support Oxfam’s work towards a fairer, safer, more sustainable world. Find out more about Oxfam’s Biggest Coffee Break at www.oxfamcoffeebreak.org.nz.

Kiwis have until the 14th of May to bid on Bret at www.trademe.co.nz/stores/oxfam

In conjunction with the auction Oxfam has also extended signups for its popular Coffee Break event, being held all over the country. Limited packs are available to those who would like to host a fair trade Coffee Break and raise money for Oxfam’s work. To sign up, please visit www.oxfamcoffeebreak.org.nz – packs limited to first 200 hosts to sign up before May 11th.

Keywords:

Fair Trade Fortnight May 5-20 2012

Fair Trade Fortnight logo

Kiwis are being urged to Choose Fair this Fair Trade Fortnight (5-20 May) to help provide a better future for more and more struggling small-scale farmers and workers in developing countries.

Campaigners and Fairtrade supporters up and down the country are organising a range of events and stunts for Fair Trade Fortnight and the campaign launched in Auckland this year with ‘A Fairtrade Breakfast in the City” hosted by comedian and ‘Opinionist’ Te Radar.

Te Radar says of Fairtrade “It’s one of the most simple decisions I think you can make when you’re shopping, consider if I had grown this product – how would I like to be treated – and then you can buy accordingly. If you believe you should be treated fairly then choose Fairtrade – it’s not rocket science.”

Special guest at the breakfast was Michael Toliman, a Fairtrade coffee farmer from Papua New Guinea, who described how Kiwi purchases of his Fairtrade coffee have made a world of difference to his family and whole community. Michael will also appear at A Fairtrade Breakfast in the City in Wellington on Friday 18th May and at Dunedin’s First Fair Trade Breakfast on Friday 11th May.

Fair Trade Fortnight is the biggest annual country-wide awareness- raising Fairtrade campaign and the theme this year is ‘‘Choose Fair’ – a call to all New Zealanders to take a stance and choose Fairtrade coffee, tea, chocolate, bananas and cotton products.

“By selecting these products consumers can be sure that farmers receive a fair and stable price as well as an extra Fairtrade Premium. This is a cash sum they can invest democratically in social, economic and environmental development projects such as building roads, clinics and schools and training in sustainable farming techniques – so choosing fair is something we can all feel really good about” says Fairtrade ANZ CEO, Stephen Knapp.

New Zealanders care about what’s fair, a GlobeScan survey for Fairtrade International in October revealed that a staggering 91% of Kiwis believe that companies should pay farmers and workers in developing countries fairly – higher than the global average.

Currently 1.2 million small-holder farmers and workers in 63 developing countries benefit from Fairtrade. “If each of us bought just one more Fairtrade chocolate bar, ordered another latte and bought a tee-shirt made with Fairtrade cotton – just think how many more of these people we could help” says Knapp.

An attempt at the first nationwide Carrot Mob in the world, (to benefit coffee farmers in Papua New Guinea) by Conscious Consumers, Oxfam’s Biggest Coffee Breaks, and an experiment to Pay Fairtrade Forward by the P3 Foundation are some of the events organised by supporters. In store chocolate tastings, special displays in 80 Countdown stores, nationwide TV ad campaigns from Fairtrade, Whittaker’s and Wild Bean Café, and promotions by Esquires and many independent cafes are all designed to get New Zealanders talking about Fairtrade and to actually get even more of us buying Fairtrade Certified products.

More info and events: www.fta.org.au/node/762

Keywords:

Recycler sends 1,232 Honest Water Eco-Bottles back to Charlie’s

Gina with a Charlie's Honest Water Eco-Bottle. photo credit Sophie Ward.

Wanaka Wastebusters media release. Photo by Sophie Ward

Recycler Wanaka Wastebusters is sending 1,232 Honest Water Eco-Bottles back to Charlie’s because Wastebusters can’t recycle them.

“We can’t recycle Charlie’s Honest Water Eco-Bottles because they’re made from PLA (polylactic acid), said Wanaka Wastebusters spokesperson Gina Dempster.

“Normally we pull them out and throw them in the rubbish. But we collected such a big quantity from Wanaka Warbirds over Easter that we decided to send them up to Charlie’s in Auckland and ask them to recycle the bottles.”

The labelling on the Charlie’s Honest Water Eco-Bottle includes a recycling symbol and the words “Care for your environment, please recycle.”

Ms Dempster said the labelling on the bottles is confusing for consumers and retailers.

“We have spoken to several shops in Wanaka, as well as the caterers from Warbirds, and they were all surprised to hear that we can’t recycle these bottles. They all said they wouldn’t choose them in future.”

“We’d like to see Charlie’s improve their labelling so that it has clear and accurate information about what actually happens to these bottles at the end of their life.”

Ms Dempster said the Wanaka recycling centre had done a lot of research to find out that recycling of PLA, which is made from plants, is in its infancy.

“The only reprocessing plants that we have traced are a pilot plant in Belgium and a small plant in the US. It’s extremely unlikely that PLA from New Zealand will end up in either of these countries, and it would also be prohibitively expensive to send bottles there.”

Ms Dempster said Wanaka Wastebusters has nothing against PLA as a material, but wanted to see clear and accurate labelling on packaging.

“We support the international move to change the identification code for PLA from a number 7 (which is the catch-all code for many plastics) to a new number such as a 0. That will make it clearer that PLA is a new plastic which requires a new infrastructure to be set up worldwide for recycling.”

Ms Dempster said anyone introducing a new or rarely used packaging material could talk to Wanaka Wastebusters or other recyclers to clarify whether it could be recycled in New Zealand.

“We’re always keen to talk, and we want to help businesses make environmentally responsible choices. That’s why we’re running Smartpackaging Business Workshops as part of the Unpackit project, funded by the Waste Minimisation Fund,” she said.

Wanaka Wastebusters will run Smartpackaging Business Workshops in Dunedin on 3rd May, Wellington on 10th May, Auckland on 17th May and Christchurch on 24th May . See www.smartpackaging.org.nz for details or contact Gina.

Natureworks (manufacturers of the “Ingeo” PLA which Charlie’s Honest Water Eco-Bottles are made from) website on the limited recycling infrastructure available for PLA.

http://www.natureworksllc.com/The-Ingeo-Journey/End-of-Life-Options/Feedstock-Recycling.aspx

Ecofest coming to Golden Bay in May 2012

Ecofest Logo

Reproduced from the GB Weekly

“Ecofest is about smart ideas that are good for the environment and save people money – bringing them into the common realm and making them accessible for people.” Ecofest Golden Bay organiser Claire Webster explains the thinking behind the 12 year-old festival, which will feature trade stalls, seminars and hands-on workshops.

Staging Ecofest in Golden Bay this year is one sure way of making the smart ideas more accessible to people on this side of the Hill, says Claire, and there will be plenty on display when Ecofest opens at 10am on Saturday 12 May in the Takaka Primary School hall.

“Some examples are really artful recycled clothing, alternative household cleaning methods, solar panels and ‘econo’ ambient heaters. The thing is that people may well be attracted along by one or two really interesting ideas and then discover a whole lot of other things that really appeal to them.”

People who are planning to build a house or are in the process of building right now will find plenty of ideas to take away, says Claire. “There’s a very clever shower dome bubble that fits over your shower cubicle. It traps the condensation, making your bathroom drier and your shower experience more pleasurable too. That’s just one of the ideas that we think are going to appeal to a lot of people.”

Claire says that businesses that mounted exhibits at previous Ecofests in Nelson reported full order books in the months that followed, especially those businesses offering innovative, practical and contemporary ideas. Claire and the event manager, Jo Reilly from Tasman District Council in Richmond, have given preference to local firms over out-of-towners, they say. “We completely support shopping local, but not everything is available here.”

The festival will also feature a competition for schools involving the construction of useful items from the recycling bin. Golden Bay Federated Farmers will conduct a panel discussion too.

“Ecofest is completely aimed at everyday, mainstream people,” says Claire. “If you don’t think you’re green at all, I’d encourage you to come and see all the different ways that you can save money. One of the things I’ve noticed about this kind of innovation is that the ideas of 10 years ago that seemed a little radical are now mainstream.”

Some stall space is still available for Golden Bay’s Ecofest. Contact Claire at the TDC service centre, 525 0020.
Neil Wilson

Maui’s death the tragic price of inaction

Maui's dolphins surfacing

Forest & Bird media release

Forest & Bird said today the reported death of another Maui’s dolphin on the Taranaki coast underlines the tragic failure of the government to act fast enough to ensure the world’s rarest dolphin is saved from extinction.

“The Minister of Primary Industries David Carter must use his emergency powers now to ensure there are no further deaths of Maui’s dolphins off the Taranaki coast. We are angry because he could have acted earlier,” Forest & Bird Marine Conservation Advocate Katrina Subedar said.

The Fairfax news website Stuff today reported a source saying the dead Maui’s dolphin was found on Thursday or Friday on a beach near Pungarehu, south of New Plymouth. It was collected by the Department of Conservation and a call taker on DOC’s hotline confirmed the death, Stuff reported.

In February, the death of a Maui’s dolphin in a fishing net off the Taranaki coast in January was belatedly confirmed by the government. Forest & Bird urged the Minister of Primary Industries to use his emergency powers to extend a ban on gill nets – the greatest threat to the dolphins – to include the Taranaki coast.

“This latest death shows the tragic cost of failing to use these emergency powers. But the minister can still act now to prevent any further deaths,” Forest & Bird’s Marine Conservation Advocate Katrina Subedar said.

Last month DOC’s latest population estimate showed there were only around 55 Maui’s dolphins left – excluding calves under a year old. This showed the population had declined drastically since a population estimate in 2004.

News of the population fall was accompanied by a proposal from the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry to extend a ban on gill nets around the Taranaki coast as an interim measure pending a review of protection measures.

“These interim measures are not due to come into effect until mid to late May after a consultation. But the Maui’s dolphin population is on a knife edge and the minister needs to act now,” Katrina Subedar said.

“The threat of extinction facing our Maui’s dolphins is gaining attention around the world and if we fail to save them, our reputation for looking after nature and our environment will be destroyed.”

Although a useful first measure, the extension of the gill net ban to the Taranaki coast will not be enough to ensure the survival of Maui’s dolphins. The ban needs to be extended to all regions Maui’s dolphins may be found and needs to include all harbours and seas in those areas up to a depth of 100 metres.

The current gill net prohibition area – excluding Taranaki – was put in place along most of the upper half of the North Island’s west coast in two stages over the last decade.

Contact: Katrina Subedar, Marine Conservation Advocate, 021 426 984

More than 90% of Kiwi shoppers want a fair deal for farmers and workers in developing countries

shopping for Fairtrade

Fairtrade media release

New Zealand shoppers are in tune with consumers around the world who believe their shopping choices can make a positive difference for farmers and workers in developing countries, according to a new global survey of 17,000 consumers in 24 countries conducted for Fairtrade International (FLO) by international research consultancy GlobeScan.

When it comes to making a decision in the shopping aisle, Fairtrade is the most widely recognised ethical label globally and New Zealand is in line with the global average for recognition – with nearly six in ten consumers (57%) being familiar with the FAIRTRADE Label.

More than half of Kiwi consumers surveyed (51%) say they trust the Fairtrade brand and the more familiar people are with the Fairtrade Label, the more they trust it. More than three quarters (76%) of consumers who recognise the FAIRTRADE Label regard it as a trusted label.

The poll shows that a large percentage of New Zealanders have high expectations of companies dealing with farmers and workers in poor countries with 91 per cent believing companies should pay farmers and workers fairly – compared to the global average of 85 per cent. The same number (91%) agrees that the use of harmful chemicals should be avoided and 92 per cent are concerned with product safety.

More than half of New Zealand consumers (54%) feel empowered to make a difference through their shopping choices and 79 per cent have high expectations of companies with regard to the important role they have in reducing poverty through the way they do business.

NZ shoppers recognise the role Fairtrade plays in enabling them to make a difference with 53 per cent of those familiar with it saying that the FAIRTRADE Label makes it easier for them to decide if products are ethically produced. More generally, and in line with the global trend, the study confirmed that 76 per cent of Kiwi consumers believe independent, third-party certification is the best way to verify a product’s social and environmental claims.

Results show 61 per cent of New Zealanders surveyed believe Fairtrade helps farmers and workers in developing countries escape poverty and receive a fair price.

Fairtrade ANZ CEO Stephen Knapp said the survey showed Kiwi consumers, just like the majority of their global counterparts, really do care about where the products they buy every day come from and that the farmers and workers at the end of the supply chain are getting a fair deal for their hard work.

“Kiwi shoppers know that by choosing a product with the FAIRTRADE Label, they are directly helping to create a fairer world for all and are increasingly expecting companies to provide them more opportunities to make the fair and ethical choice at the checkout”.

New Zealand consumers, along with their global counterparts, are backing their beliefs with concrete action. Globally, shoppers spent €4.36 billion on Fairtrade products in 2010 – an increase of 28 percent while New Zealand and Australian consumers combined tripled their Fairtrade purchases by more than 200 per cent to over AU$120 million.

Keywords: