Hawke’s Bay grows and processes a huge amount of food, particularly fruit. Some companies are progressing projects to add value to by-products, but many don’t have sufficient internal resources to do this optimally. All businesses are under pressure to improve their performance on sustainability metrics.
In Hawke’s Bay, the food industry (from the farm to the processor) faces significant sustainability challenges. Consumers, customers, and regulators are all demanding better performance and evidence of that performance.
Hawke’s Bay’s five councils are investing in a food programme, which will coordinate Hawke’s Bay’s ‘Sustainable is Attainable’ project, alongside and connected to the programme running in South Canterbury, which enables and supports businesses to come together to look for collaborative opportunities that come from combined scale and/or combined waste streams.
Venture Timaru has been running ‘Sustainable is Attainable’, which has demonstrated the value of this approach. Venture Timaru and its partners are happy to support Hawke’s Bay on this journey, and for us to integrate into the ‘Sustainable is Attainable’ programme as appropriate.
The first stage of the project ran over summer 21/22 with three students on the ground in Hawke’s Bay collecting and collating data from participating businesses, with support from 3R. Two of the students were funded by Callaghan Innovation, and the third is funded by the Bioresource Processing Alliance. Approximately 30 Hawke’s Bay businesses are currently committed to the project, which began in mid-November 2021.
Businesses can join the programme at any point – the door to the tent will always remain open. There is no direct cost to businesses for participation at this point, but a time commitment will be required.
We are partnering with Massey University as a portal to relevant research and development expertise and will also benefit from connections with the University of Canterbury Biomolecular Interaction Centre, which has been involved with Venture Timaru from the outset.