Wild & Free: Foraging in New Zealand for Budget Zero Wasters

Wild & Free: Foraging in New Zealand for Budget Zero Wasters

We love foraging as a way of getting some free, zero waste kai and we’ve written about this before. We also love the feeling of locality and seasonality that comes with foraging, as well as the heightened sense of connection with our surroundings. We’ve come to realise how oblivious we used to be to the free and nutritious food all around us. So oblivious that it took us a while to recognise the silliness of spending money on certain kai (packaged or unpackaged) that we could have easily gotten for free, fresh and unpackaged, if only we knew where to look.

Now, our daily reality includes two other considerations. We try really hard not to support non-organic food growing or producing practices with our money because these practices are not good for the planet and other species, let alone our own. However, we also live and run The Rubbish Trip off a daily budget of $20. These two realities mean that we have to be pretty savvy about how we get our food. Straight up, foraging has been a bit of a life-saver for us!

We’ve decided to share regular posts on what we’re foraging and where, and what we’re doing with these weird and wonderful things that we find. We want to share some of the joy and satisfaction that we have gained from this practice, and maybe inspire others to love it too. Click on the pics at the bottom of this page to find out about more about each foraged goodie as we post them (make sure you press the “Load More…” button a few times so all the pictures show up).

If these posts make you want to give foraging a go, we just want to emphasise that it’s important you know what you’re looking for. Many plants and fungi in New Zealand are poisonous, so you must be careful. Trial and error is no approach to foraging; it helps to go out with someone who knows what they are doing and/or always to be 100% sure of what you’re picking before you eat it. Furthermore, you need to be savvy about where you pick to avoid possible contamination from car pollution or spraying (no one wants a dose of exhaust fumes or round-up in their lovely dinner).

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