Make the most of waste by the Auckland Council

North Shore Food Scraps Service

In May 2014, around 2,000 North Shore households were invited to take part in a kerbside food scraps collection trial as part of wider research into how to best divert food waste from landfill.

Up until now, approximately 1,560 households across the North Shore have participated in this trial. Thanks to the contribution and efforts of participants, trial results show there has been a significant reduction in household waste being sent to landfill and that participants are more aware of the cost of food waste, helping them to save money.

The results from the North Shore trial helped to shape the design of the new food scraps kerbside collection service in Papakura and is paving the way for the service to be introduced to the rest of urban Auckland from 2020/2021.

As part of our Annual Budget 2019/2020 consultation, Auckland Council is seeking your valued feedback on a proposal to introduce a targeted rate for the kerbside food scraps collection service to your property. You can have your say on this proposal online at akhaveyoursay.nz. You can also visit this website to learn about other ways to have your say.

Frequently Asked Questions

What was the trial launch date on the North Shore?

The trial was rolled out the week of Monday, 19 May 2014.  Actual collections started later that week from 21-23 May.

What was the initial proposed end date for the trial?

Initially the trial was planned as a 14-week trial, with a final collection taking place during the week of Monday, 25 August 2014.

Why was the initial trial extended?

Due to the success and popularity of the trial and the positive feedback from trial participants, it was agreed to extend the trial indefinitely.  Householders were notified by letter during the week of 22 August 2014 that the trial would be extended to help Auckland Council learn more about how to make the service work for Aucklanders, before we rolled it out to the whole region.

How was the trial monitored?

The trial was monitored by an independent research company who actively monitored and evaluated the trial from May 2014 to December 2016.  An initial survey was undertaken in June 2014.  This was followed by a series of in depth interviews in late 2014.  A final series of in-depth interviews and a survey were conducted during August and September 2016.

What were the results of the trial?

Thanks to the contribution and efforts of participants, trial results show there has been a significant reduction in household waste being sent to landfill from households using the food scraps bins.  Between May 2014 and April 2018 (four-year period), more than 618 tonnes of food scraps were diverted from landfill in the North Shore trial area – an average of 12.89 tonnes of food scraps per month. 

Since around 45% of the average Auckland household rubbish bin is food scraps, trial participants are now more aware that using the food scraps service helps them to save money, as they are putting less into their rubbish bin and saving on waste disposal costs.

How was trial participants’ feedback used to shape the future food scraps service?  What changes were made based on their feedback? 

The trial results and the feedback from the surveys and in-depth interviews were used to shape the service when it was rolled out to Papakura in March 2018.  The data collected from the trial has helped to scope the region’s food scraps processing capacity requirements and how the kerbside collection service will work. Feedback from participants led to changes in the printed information provided to householders about the service.

How many people/households are using the food scraps service on the North Shore?

Up until now, approximately 1,560 households across the North Shore have participated in this trial.  The Gravitas survey showed that around 78% of surveyed households in the trial area indicated they were using the food scraps service.  Almost 7 in 10 (69%) of respondents said they set out their bin every week for collection.  Survey results indicated that the main reason people were not using the food scraps collection weekly was because they had lower levels of food waste and did not need to put out the bin every week or because they were using the service alongside home composting.

Do any other areas of Auckland have a food scraps kerbside collection service?  If yes, are they paying for it?

Yes, the food scraps kerbside collection service was rolled out in Papakura in March 2018 and Papakura ratepayers pay for the service through a targeted rates’ charge. 

From what date is it proposed that trial participants will need to start paying a targeted rate for the food scraps kerbside collection service?

The proposed targeted rate of $68.34 would be introduced on 1 July 2019. 

Why is the food scraps targeted rate being introduced now? 

There is a cost to provide the kerbside collection service for the processing of food scraps. The best way to provide this service is through a targeted rate. With the food scraps service being rolled out to Papakura last year, Papakura ratepayers have paid a targeted rate of $67.00 for their food scraps kerbside service for the 2018/19 year. It is proposed that the targeted rate for Papakura will be $68.34 in 2019/2020.  We are now proposing to introduce a food scraps collection targeted rate of $68.34 for the almost 2,000 properties in the North Shore former trial area currently receiving the service for free.  This ensures all properties receiving the food scraps service are treated equally. The food scraps service is due to be rolled out across the rest of urban Auckland from 2020/2021.

Why hasn’t it been introduced previously? 

A targeted rate has not been introduced previously as the area was still operating as a trial area until the food scraps service was rolled out to another area of Auckland.  The trial was fully funded by the waste levy.

When will the last free compostable bin liners be distributed to trial participants?

It is proposed that the last free dispatch of compostable bin liners will be sent to all participating households in April 2019.  The use of bin liners in the kitchen caddy is optional.  For those that wish to continue using the liners, it is proposed that from 1 July 2019, householders will be able to purchase a pack of eight bin liners for $2.00 from major supermarket outlets (such as Countdown, New World and Pak N’ Save), local libraries, and Auckland Council service centres.