KAItiaki Composting is a social enterprise being led by a group of young people from Zeal in New Plymouth supported by BAF – Bishop’s Action Foundation, the Marfell Community Garden, Sustainable Taranaki, Start-Up Taranaki and local businesses like Mitre 10. It has been developed as a solution to mounting food waste. Food waste is collected, composted and then used to grow more fruit and vegetables. The compost is developed at Marfell’s community garden, some of it is donated to the garden and the rest is sold to support the business model.
Recognising that these are tough times for business the project offers a 3-month free trial and then a koha system allowing participating business owners to contribute what they can. KAItiaki Composting provides a wheelie bin to collect food waste (with advice on what can and can’t go in the bin). Each bin is collected once a week and replaced with a fresh, clean one. If businesses prefer they can also ‘self-drop’ by taking their bin to Marfell Community Garden and depositing it in the marked compost bay.
By composting food waste we prevent it going to landfill and creating harmful gases as it decomposes. We also use the compost we create to grow fresh fruit and veges for our local communities.
KAItiaki Composting is also providing valuable skills for young people learning how to establish and run a small business.
We are grateful for funding support from TOI Foundation and MSD’s Food Secure Communities fund that have contributed to this journey.