With the return of Kai Conscious Café, islanders will again be able to gather to help cook rescued food for a community meal every Friday.

Community cooking with Kai Conscious Cafe is back this Friday, after a year-long hiatus. 

The weekly cook-up and community meal at the Waiheke Resources Trust Sustainability Centre has been on hold since lockdown in August last year. But from this week, people will once again be able to gather at 11am every Friday to help cook rescued food for a community meal at 1pm. 

According to the Poverty Monitor 2020 report, Kiwi households throw away 157,389 tonnes of food each year. Meanwhile, one in five Kiwi kids lives in poverty, with their families unable to reliably afford enough food for them to eat. 

Kai Conscious’ goal is to divert some of that food heading to landfills, to make nutritious meals and teach people sustainable food management strategies to minimise household food waste.

“We began this Friday gathering more than five years ago, with an eye to using up food rescued from our main collection partner Countdown but it quickly became more than that,” Kai Conscious coordinator Kathy Voyles says.

It has become a place for all sorts of people to meet and mingle, old and young, tourist and local, immigrants and families who’ve been on Waiheke for generations, she says.

• Paul Mitchell

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