Zero Waste in the Far North District

Zero Waste in the Far North District

This guide covers the Far North District only. For other areas of Northland, please refer to the Zero Waste in Northland post.


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Our heartfelt gratitude to Sugarcube Studios, the creators of EcoSpot, for bringing our guides to life – designing a map for us and creating such joyful imagery to go with it!


Lots of pantry staples – from flours, grains and rice, through to condiments, spices, legumes, nuts, seeds and liquid foods – usually come in single-use packets. These shops stock all manner of pantry foods loose in bulk bins (or operate return & refill systems for their packaging), allowing you to put these goods straight into your own bags, jars, containers and bottles, and skip the packaging!

  • Paihia Lanes Pantry, Paihia Lanes, Paihia – *** watch this space*** this store is installing bulk bins for dried food.
  • Kerikeri Organic, 1188 State Highway 10 (7km south of Kerikeri off State Highway 10, 2.5km south of the Kerikeri Crossroads) – this small countryside organic shop runs on an honesty box system. Alongside fresh organic fruit and veges, eggs etc. they also have a range of bulk bins stocking grains, beans/legumes, flour, seeds, spices, and even bulk liquid refills of things like tamari and apple cider vinegar (the owners are open to buying in requested goods, so get in contact if you’d like to see them stock something that isn’t there when you go in).
  • Kerikeri Bulk Foods Store, 92 Kerikeri Road – Offers a wide array of dried food in bulk (including, but not limited to, nuts, seeds, cereals, grains, flours, and legumes), a range of spices, and a broad selection of liquid foods (including vinegars, oils and syrups).  They also have a peanut butter extruder, just BYO jar! Also, this store gives a 10% discount if you bring your own bags and containers!
  • Four Square Waipapa, 1993 State Highway 10, Waipapa – BYO bottles to get amazing local organic extra virgin olive oil on tap!
  • Bush Fairy Dairy, 1195 Oruru Road, Peria – an absolute gem off the beaten track in the Far North! Stocks a range of dried foods in bulk bins, including flours, grains, beans/legumes, nuts, seeds and spices. Offers refills of vinegar and tamari, and even has a peanut butter extruder with organic peanuts (broken atm but hoping to have it fixed)! Anything packed in little plastic snaplock bags (e.g. dried fruit and baking soda) can be transferred to your own bag at the counter and then the shop will reuse the little bags.
  • It’s Healthy Wholefoods, Shop 8 Plaza North, 210-222 Commerce Street, Kaitaia – a small organic shop, stocking dried bulk bin grains, beans/legumes, nuts, seeds, dried fruit, flours and tea. Offers refills of tamari, olive oil and apple cider vinegar – BYO bottle.
  • EcoCentre Kaitaia, 5/42 Commerce Street (entrance on Bank Street), Kaitaia – this amazing little eco centre is humming with activity and full of affordable low waste goodies. You can get local extra virgin organic olive oil, amazing coconut oil, and apple cider vinegar from bulk dispensers – BYO bottle/jar.
  • Supermarkets – most supermarkets have bulk bin/pick and mix sections with wholefoods (BYO bags for these). However they’re pretty expensive, often more so than equivalent ingredients in packets (bah!), and often pricier than the bulk bins at organic stores. But look out for when things in the bulk bin aisle in supermarkets are on special because sometimes you can get a good deal! The PAK’nSAVE, 111 North Road, Kaitaia does have a decent range of loose, unpackaged goods in the bulk section, including grains, legumes, nuts, dried fruit, sweets, and even veggie chips and other snacks.


The following shops sell unpackaged meat, sausages, smallgoods, seafood, cheese and/or deli foods and will happily put these straight into a BYO container – woohoo!

  • Central Butchery, 29 Gillies Street, Kawakawa
  • Stumpy’s Fish & Chips, 4 Station Road E, Kawakawa – get smoked fish into your own container
  • Mac’s Prime Meats, 5959 (approx.) SH1, Moerewa (east side of town)
  • Ohaeawai Butchery, 7589 SH1, Ohaeawai
  • Tony’s Butchery, 91 Broadway Kaikohe
  • Thomas’s Fish Shop, 74 Broadway, Kaikohe – unpackaged fresh and smoked fish, and crayfish available to put in BYO container
  • Churchill’s Fine Meats and Deli, 81 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri and 12 Klinac Lane, Waipapa – happy to put meat and deli food into BYO containers.
  • PC Meats/Pete’s Home Kill,
  • Four Square Waipapa, 1993 State Highway 10, Waipapa – BYO container for meat, cheese, salad, olives etc from the deli. The owner/operator is passionate about environmental sustainability and reducing waste, and has incorporated those values into every level of the business (the products that he stocks, working with suppliers to reduce unnecessary packaging, not offering plastic bags, and using recycled wood for shelving and interior decor).
  • Whānau Meats, 137 Commerce Street, Kaitaia – this butcher is happy to put cuts of meat in a BYO container.
  • Bells Produce, 77 North Road, Kaitaia – BYO containers to the butcher section for unpackaged meat, sausages etc
  • Get Bostock’s Organic Chicken which comes in Grounded certified home compostable packaging at Four Square Paihia, 41 Williams Road, Paihia; Kerikeri Organic, 1188 State Highway 10 (7km south of Kerikeri off State Highway 10, 2.5km south of the Kerikeri Crossroads (also sells butter packaged in greaseproof paper here); and It’s Healthy Wholefoods, Shop 8 Plaza North, 210-222 Commerce Street, Kaitaia.
  • Unpackaged live mussels – there are a few stores around town that stock unpackaged live mussels at self-serve counters. We put them straight into upcycled ice cream containers/BYO containers rather than the plastic bags the stores usually provide. You can find unpackaged live mussels at New World Kaikohe, corner of Dickieson Street and Memorial Ave, Kaikohe; Four Square Paihia, 41 Williams Road, Paihia; Countdown Kerikeri, 56 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; New World Kerikeri, 99 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri (also sells whole fish self serve); Four Square Kaeo, corner of Leigh Street and Waikare Ave, Kaeo; Bells Produce, 77 North Road, Kaitaia; PAK’nSAVE, 111 North Road, Kaitaia (also stocks whole fish unpackaged).
  • BYO containers at the supermarket delis – Most supermarkets have a deli section offering meat, seafood, olives and other antipasti, salads, lunch foods and more – all unpackaged. All major supermarkets will now allow you to BYO container for these goods.


The following stores bake and sell unpackaged bread and bakery goods (in some of these stores some items might be pre-packed or wrapped in cling film, just avoid those things!). Simply BYO bread bag to put the bread/bakery goods into. Some places will bag up their bread later in the day, so you want to get in there before they do that (i.e. before 1pm).

  • Len’s Pies, 153 Broadway, Kaikohe – loaves and fried bread (and other baked goods) unpackaged
  • Paihia Bakery, 39 Williams Road, Paihia
  • The Bakery, 9 York Street, Russell
  • McGregors Fresh Food, 592 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri
  • The Old Packhouse Market Store, 505 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri – their sourdough loaves and baguettes are baked on Wednesday and the weekend for the market. Any unsold loaves will be wrapped in plastic to keep fresh, so get in on the day!
  • Kerikeri Bakehouse, two locations: 92c Fairway Drive and 334 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri
  • Local bakers at the Kaitaia Saturday MarketSaturdays 7am-12pm, 11 Matthews Ave
  • Coast to Coast Bakery, 106 Commerce Street, Kaitaia
  • Most supermarkets (and even some Four Squares) stock unpackaged bread, bread rolls and/or bakery goods in their bakery section – just pop them into your BYO bags!


  • Markets – No two ways about it, if you want to get a good source of unpackaged, often locally grown, produce, markets are the place to frequent! Some great local markets include the Kaitaia Saturday MarketSaturdays 7am-12pm, 11 Matthews Ave; the Bay of Islands Farmers’ Markets, Thursdays 1.30-4pm at the Village Green in Paihia, and Saturdays 8.30am-12pm at the Post Office Carpark, Hobson Ave, Kerikeri, or The Old Packhouse Market at 505 Kerikeri Road Saturdays 8am-1:30pm and Sundays 9am-1:30pm. At most markets you can meet the grower/producer face-to-face, making them an ideal space to start fruitful conversations about waste-free food, and developing relationships and systems that enable you to get your favourite fruit, vege and preserves without the packaging. Have a chat to see if you can leave containers with the stall holders for them to fill with your desired product for you to pick up from them the following week, or if the stallholder uses glass jars for packaging, ask whether they will take their empty glass jars back for sterilisation and reuse.
  • Unpackaged sweets and treats
    • Stone Store, 248 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri – sells unpackaged sweets – BYO jars!
    • Crave, Unit C5, 2 Cobham Road, Kerikeri – unpackaged gourmet popcorn – yus! Just BYO bags or containers.
    • Ella & Co., 2a Williams Road, Paihia – makes and sells its own fudge unpackaged, BYO containers
  • Pet Food – get pet food in bulk dispensers at Northland Pet Food, 65 Cobham Road, Kerikeri.


Look out for places that sell whole or ground coffee beans unpackaged, and bring your own bag and container to fill. Going direct to coffee roasters is the best option, but you can also look out for bulk dispensers of unpackaged coffee in other stores (which usually have in-store grinders also). Here are the spots we found that offer these options:


We avoid teabags as most have plastic in them, which we don’t want in our tea or our soil. Using loose leaf tea is an easy way to get around this. The trick is to find somewhere that sells loose leaf tea packaging-free, so you can put the leaves straight into BYO jars/containers! You’ll find loose tea leaves in bulk dispensers at:

  • Vitality, 86 Marsden Road, Paihia
  • Tea Licious loose leaf teas which come in brown paper bags (no plastic lining) at Wood2Water, 22 York Street, Russell, and The Old Packhouse Market Store, 505 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri
  • Most supermarkets stock Bell loose leaf black tea which comes in 100% cardboard and paper packaging, which is recyclable and/or compostable.


Sourcing cow’s milk without the plastic bottles or non-dairy milk without the dreaded Tetra-pak is no mean feat! We’ve found the following options:

  • Return & Refill glass bottle scheme – Bella Vacca Jerseys sells milk in reusable glass bottles at various outlets around the Far North, including: Stumpy’s Fish & Chips, 4 Station Road, Kawakawa; Four Square Paihia, 41 Williams Road, Paihia; Junction Cafe & Dairy, 1264 Puketona Road, RD3, Oromahoe; The Old Packhouse Market, Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri on Saturdays; Four Square Waipapa, 1993 State Highway 10, Waipapa; The Cable Bay Store, 384 State Highway 10, Cable Bay; and Frosty’s Vault Cafe & Bar, 107 Commerce Street, Kaitaia.
    • How does the system work? The first time you buy a bottle of milk, you pay a little extra to cover the cost of the bottle and to ensure that you return it when you’re done. Return empty bottles to any stockist of the milk, and exchange it for a full bottle for only the price of the milk (or else get your deposit back). The empties are then returned to Bella Vacca Jerseys for sterilisation and reuse – so the bottles just go around and around – true zero waste!
  • Milk Powder – get unpackaged in bulk from Kerikeri Bulk Foods Store, 92 Kerikeri Road


Look out for places that sell beer on tap and BYO bottles/flagons to fill up. Breweries are awesome, but lots of liquor stores offer this option too! We found beer on tap at:

  • Ferment, 2 Cobham Road, Kerikeri.

Also, don’t forget that most liquor stores do ‘swappa crates’ of beer – i.e. crates of twelve 745ml bottles of classic NZ beer (e.g. Lion Red/Brown, Speights, Tui, Export Gold etc.) which can be returned (when the bottles are empty) and are then sent back to the brewery for sterilisation and refill (a better outcome for glass bottles than recycling because reusing the same bottle over and over requires way less energy and resources than recycling).


  • Hmm… we didn’t spot anywhere selling other drink options in bulk dispensers or in refills – anyone know of anything – juice, drinking chocolate, kombucha?


Reusable drinking vessels (cups and water bottles)

Say “no more” to disposable takeaway coffee cups and plastic water bottles by getting yourself reusables instead! Get reusable water bottles at The Grass Hut, 37 Gillies Street, Kawakawa; The Cabbage Tree, 69 Marsden Road and 11 Williams Road, Paihia; Ella & Co., 2a Williams Road, Paihia; Gold ‘n’ Gifts, 13 Williams Road, Paihia; Flying Fish Design Store, 9 Williams Road, Paihia; Vitality, 86 Marsden Road, Paihia; Little Giants based at the Kaipātiki Eco Hub, 195 Puketona Road, Paihia; Max Kiwi Souvenirs, 23 The Strand, Russell; Fullers Gift Shop, 29 The Strand, Russell; The Scullery, 3 Fairway Drive, Kerikeri; Hardy’s, 69 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; Eko, 66F Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; Pallet Design, 86 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; Stone Store, 248 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; Marston Moor, 74 Commerce Street, Kaitaia

There are heaps of places to buy reusable takeaway coffee cups in the Far North:

  • If you’re in Kaitaia, get yourself a Kai-Tāia Kapu at EcoCentre Kaitaia, 5/42 Commerce Street (entrance on Bank Street), Kaitaia
  • Find the Keep Cup brand at Barrow Boys Coffee, 94 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; Four Square Waipapa, 1993 State Highway 10, Waipapa
  • Get the NZ-made Cuppa Coffee Cup at The Grass Hut, 37 Gillies Street, Kawakawa (also NZ-made Moana Road cups); The Cabbage Tree, 69 Marsden Road and 11 Williams Road, Paihia; Paihia Bookshop, 37 Williams Road, Paihia; Susie’s Gifts, 5 Cass Street, Russell; Fullers Gift Shop, 29 The Strand, Russell The Old Packhouse Market Store, 505 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; Zest Café, 73 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; CBEC Garden Centre Shop, 190 Pukepoto Road, Kaitaia
  • Also NZ-made Ideal Cups are sold at Flax Bush, 50 Waterfront Drive, Mangonui; and Boatshed Cafe, 8 Clendon Esplanade, Rawene.
  • Joco Cups are sold at Third Wheel Coffee Co., 78-94 Marsden Road, Paihia; Barrow Boys Coffee, 94 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri
  • Sol cups are soles at Eko, 66F Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri
  • Zuperzozial and other brands of bamboo fibre cups are sold at The Scullery, 3 Fairway Drive, Kerikeri; Pallet Design, 86 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; Ella & Co., 2a Williams Road, Paihia; Flying Fish Design Store, 9 Williams Road, Paihia; Susie’s Gifts, 5 Cass Street, Russell; Shackleton’s Pharmacy, 89-91 Commerce Street, Kaitaia; Marston Moor, 74 Commerce Street, Kaitaia
  • Ceramic coffee cups with silicone lids are sold at The Scullery, 3 Fairway Drive, Kerikeri; Essentially Flowers, 79 Commerce Street, Kaitaia
  • The Scullery, 3 Fairway Drive, Kerikeri – stocks a wide range of cups
  • Avanti Go cups at Gold ‘n’ Gifts, 13 Williams Road, Paihia

Reusable bags (shopping bags, produce bags and bulk bin bags)

Plastic shopping bags are a menace, but so too are those plastic produce bags for fruit and vege or the plastic bags often offered alongside bulk bins at bulk stores. You can avoid them by bringing your own bags or buying a set of reusable produce bags. If you’d like locally-made produce bags, look no further than Sarah’s Veg – Lettuce Supply You, in Kerikeri, who makes excellent, durable produce, shopping and lined meat bags, and sells them alongside her homegrown veg. You can also get them at Four Square Waipapa, 1993 State Highway 10, Waipapa. Also check out locally-made produce bags and Kai-Tāia Kete shopping bags at EcoCentre Kaitaia, 5/42 Commerce Street (entrance on Bank Street), Kaitaia. Other brands of produce, bulk bin & shopping bags are sold at Little Giants based at the Kaipātiki Eco Hub, 195 Puketona Road, Paihia; Susie’s Gifts, 5 Cass Street, Russell; Eko, 66F Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; and Stone Store, 248 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; and Boatshed Cafe, 8 Clendon Esplanade, Rawene (they also stock reusable cutlery wraps here).

Reusable straws

Say “no straw thanks” next time you order a drink out and either use your mouth to drink, or get yourself a reusable metal straw instead. If you’re keen on a reusable metal straw, you can get them from Countdown Kaikohe, 37 Station Road East, Kaikohe; Hardy’s, Paihia Lanes, Paihia; Flying Fish Design Store, 9 Williams Road, Paihia; Health 2000, 84b Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; The Scullery, 3 Fairway Drive, Kerikeri; Stone Store, 248 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; Four Square Waipapa, 1993 State Highway 10, Waipapa; Boatshed Cafe, 8 Clendon Esplanade, Rawene; The New Era Cafe, 1 Parnell Street, Rawene; EcoCentre Kaitaia, 5/42 Commerce Street (entrance on Bank Street), Kaitaia.

Alternatives to plastic cling wrap, plastic sandwich bags and tin foil

  • Beeswax wrap
    • Purchase at – The Grass Hut, 37 Gillies Street, Kawakawa; Little Giants based at the Kaipātiki Eco Hub, 195 Puketona Road, Paihia; Wood2Water, 22 York Street, Russell; Pompallier Mission Gift Shop, Russell; The Old Packhouse Market Store, 505 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri (wrapped in plastic…); Stone Store, 248 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri (though the wraps are packaged in plastic…); Unichem Kerikeri Pharmacy, 4/64 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; Eko, 66F Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; Health 2000, 84b Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; Boatshed Cafe, 8 Clendon Esplanade, Rawene; EcoCentre Kaitaia, 5/42 Commerce Street (entrance on Bank Street), Kaitaia (locally made!); It’s Healthy Wholefoods, Shop 8 Plaza North, 210-222 Commerce Street, Kaitaia; Marston Moor, 74 Commerce Street, Kaitaia; CBEC Garden Centre Shop, 190 Pukepoto Road, Kaitaia; Mana Kai Honey, 76 State Highway 1, Awanui; 
    • DIY – it’s way cheaper! You just need to get natural fibre fabric (cotton) and unpackaged beeswax. Keep an eye out at secondhand stores and fabric stores for off-cuts of cotton/fat quarters (e.g. at Paihia Bookshop, 37 Williams Road, Paihia; All You Needle, 68 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; Stone Store, 248 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; DD Gold, 63 Commerce Street, Kaitaia). Get unpackaged beeswax at the Kaipātiki Eco Hub, 195 Puketona Road, Paihia; Mana Kai Honey, 76 State Highway 1, Awanui; EcoCentre Kaitaia, 5/42 Commerce Street (entrance on Bank Street), Kaitaia.
    • Reusable sandwich bags – you can get The Rubbish Whisperer reusable sandwich pouches from Stone Store, 248 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri
  • Silicone pot/bowlcovers – a good option for storing leftovers in a bowl (other than just putting a plate on top!) or as an alternative to tin foil for roasting (as the covers can withstand temperatures of up to 220 degrees and will also keep hot food warm when transporting). You can buy these at Flying Fish Design Store, 9 Williams Road, Paihia; The Scullery, 3 Fairway Drive, Kerikeri; EcoCentre Kaitaia, 5/42 Commerce Street (entrance on Bank Street), Kaitaia.
  • Silicone storage freezer bags are sold at The Scullery, 3 Fairway Drive, Kerikeri


Refills of cleaning products

The following stores stock a wide range of liquid and/or powdered cleaning products in bulk dispensers that you can fill your own bottles and containers with:

  • Kerikeri Bulk Foods Store, 92 Kerikeri Road
  • CBEC shop, 190 Pukepoto Road, Kaitaia – stocks just a few EcoStore liquid cleaning products in bulk containers
  • It’s Healthy Wholefoods, Shop 8 Plaza North, 210-222 Commerce Street, Kaitaia –  stocks just a few EcoStore liquid cleaning products in bulk containers.

Low-waste dishwashing

You can find dishbrushes with wooden handles and removable + replaceable, home compostable heads at Hardy’s, Paihia Lanes, Paihia; Four Square Waipapa, 1993 State Highway 10, Waipapa; and Stone Store, 248 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri (they also sells a wide range of brushware and kitchen utensils made from wood and natural materials); Pompallier Mission Gift Shop, Russell; and CBEC Garden Centre Shop, 190 Pukepoto Road, Kaitaia.

You can also get Go Bamboo veggie brushes that can be used as dish scrubbers at Orange Frog, 2 Selwyn Road, Paihia; Four Square Waipapa, 1993 State Highway 10, Waipapa; and Boatshed Cafe, 8 Clendon Esplanade, Rawene – as these are made of just wood and plant fibre, they can be composted at home or burnt safely.

We also encourage people to move away from using dishclothes, sponges and bench wipes made out of synthetic material (as these leach microfibres and they’re also destined for landfill when they wear down) and to use natural fibre cloths instead:

  • For something more like a traditional dishcloth sponge, check out the SPRUCE, Wet-it!, Munch or Nil 100% cotton + cellulose dishcloth sponges (home compostable at the end of their life) which are available at Unichem Kerikeri Pharmacy, 4/64 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri
  • Nawrap 100% natural fibre dishcloths are sold at The Scullery, 3 Fairway Drive, Kerikeri; Stone Store, 248 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri.
  • Get locally knitted 100% cotton dishcloths from Little Giants based at the Kaipātiki Eco Hub, 195 Puketona Road, Paihia; Bush Fairy Dairy, 1195 Oruru Road, Peria; and the EcoCentre Kaitaia, 5/42 Commerce Street (entrance on Bank Street), Kaitaia. All the items for sale at the EcoCentre are super affordable and the staff and volunteers are really on to it when it comes to low-waste living, so a must to visit!
  • You can also get hemp dish scrubbers (scourers) at Little Giants based at the Kaipātiki Eco Hub, 195 Puketona Road, Paihia – these are home compostable at the end of their life.
  • Organic cotton dishcloths are stocked at the CBEC Shop, 190 Pukepoto Road, Kaitaia.
  • Knit or crochet your own dishcloths with 100% organic cotton from DD Gold, 63 Commerce Street, Kaitaia!

Laundry

  • Eco Planet laundry powder comes in a cardboard box with no inner plastic lining, and the scoop is also made of cardboard – available at Four Square Kaeo, corner of Leigh Street and Waikare Ave, Kaeo. Alternatively, get Earthwise 1kg packs which also have no plastic lining and no scoop at all, available at New World Kaikohe, corner of Dickieson Street and Memorial Ave, Kaikohe; and Countdown Kaikohe, 37 Station Road East, Kaikohe. Find both at PAK’nSAVE, 111 North Road, Kaitaia. You can also get Living Green laundry powder, which is the same deal (no plastic, septic tank safe) with a bamboo scoop, from Countdown Kerikeri, 56 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri.
  • Soap Nuts – these are a fruit that contain saponin and thus good for laundry – once they’re spent you can home compost them. You can get That Red House Soapberries which come in a paper bag inside a cotton bag at The Old Packhouse Market Store, 505 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri.
  • Stone Store, 248 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri – sells unpackaged bars of laundry soap that come with a nifty wooden brush.
  • Little Giants based at the Kaipātiki Eco Hub, 195 Puketona Road, Paihia – stocks Aoraki Naturals stain remover bars of soap.
  • Non-plastic clothes pegs:
    • Bamboo pegs available at Orange Frog, 2 Selwyn Road, Paihia; New World Kerikeri, 99 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; Four Square Waipapa, 1993 State Highway 10, Waipapa; Boatshed Cafe, 8 Clendon Esplanade, Rawene; It’s Healthy Wholefoods, Shop 8 Plaza North, 210-222 Commerce Street, Kaitaia.
    • You can get both old school wooden dolly pegs at Stone Store, 248 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri.
    • Get metal pegs at Stone Store, 248 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri or EcoCentre Kaitaia, 5/42 Commerce Street (entrance on Bank Street), Kaitaia.

Ingredients for DIY cleaning products

  • Baking soda – find this in bulk bins at Kerikeri Bulk Foods Store, 92 Kerikeri Road or available in upcycled and refillable glass jars at EcoCentre Kaitaia, 5/42 Commerce Street (entrance on Bank Street), Kaitaia
  • White vinegar – available on tap at Kerikeri Bulk Foods Store, 92 Kerikeri Road
  • Bars of castile soap/dishwashing bars (which you can use as a base for homemade dishwashing and laundry liquid) – get Timaru-made Aoraki Naturals dish soap bars at Little Giants based at the Kaipātiki Eco Hub, 195 Puketona Road, Paihia.

 


Zero waste teeth and mouth

  • Bamboo toothbrushes – a great alternative to plastic toothbrushes because they have wooden, home compostable handles (though bristles are still plastic and need to be removed from the handle and put in a rubbish bin). You can find bamboo toothbrushes at New World Kaikohe, corner of Dickieson Street and Memorial Ave, Kaikohe; Countdown Kaikohe, 37 Station Road East, Kaikohe; Four Square Paihia, 41 Williams Road, Paihia; Little Giants based at the Kaipātiki Eco Hub, 195 Puketona Road, Paihia; Hardy’s, Paihia Lanes, Paihia and 69 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; Countdown Kerikeri, 56 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; New World Kerikeri, 99 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; Stone Store, 248 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; Health 2000, 84b Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; Four Square Waipapa, 1993 State Highway 10, Waipapa; EcoCentre Kaitaia, 5/42 Commerce Street (entrance on Bank Street), Kaitaia; It’s Healthy Wholefoods, Shop 8 Plaza North, 210-222 Commerce Street, Kaitaia; CBEC shop, 190 Pukepoto Road, Kaitaia; PAK’nSAVE, 111 North Road, Kaitaia; and Boatshed Cafe, 8 Clendon Esplanade, Rawene.
  • Floss 
    • at Countdown Kerikeri, 56 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri you can get you can get Do Gooder floss, which comes in a refillable glass tube with a screw on metal lid. The WHITE floss is made of 100% silk and is home compostable (the black floss has polyester in it so is landfill only). When you run out of the floss, no need to get a new dispenser, you can get refills of the floss in cardboard and paper from www.dogooder.co.nz – just pop the refill into your original metal/glass dispenser. 
    • Boatshed Cafe, 8 Clendon Esplanade, Rawene stocks The Eco Floss in a glass dispenser. The floss is PLA, which is compostable. However, sometimes PLA can’t be hard to break down in a home compost but in floss form it is probably OK. This is a good alternative for vegans who may not want to use silk floss. Note that currently The Eco Floss does not offer floss refills.

Unpackaged Bars of Soap

The following stores sell totally naked/paper packaged bars of soap:

  • Flying Fish Design Store, 9 Williams Road, Paihia
  • Kerikeri Bulk Foods Store, 92 Kerikeri Road
  • Hardy’s, 69 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri
  • The Cabbage Tree, 69 Marsden Road, Paihia
  • Bush Fairy Dairy, 1195 Oruru Road, Peria
  • EcoCentre Kaitaia, 5/42 Commerce Street (entrance on Bank Street), Kaitaia
  • Hokianga i-SITE, 29 State Highway 12, Opononi

Bars for Shampoo/Shaving/Deodorant/Moisturiser

We’d encourage you to get your everyday toiletries – from shampoo through to shaving soap – in bar form, which means you totally avoid the plastic/aluminium bottles that liquid products usually come in!

  • Many places stock the popular Ethique range which includes shampoo bars, conditioner bars, shaving bars, deodorant bars, moisturiser bars, etc. (all of Ethique‘s bars come in home compostable packaging): Hardy’s, Paihia Lanes, Paihia and 69 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; Farmers, 115 Commerce Street, Kaitaia.
  • Look out for shampoo, conditioner, shaving (and more) bars made by Northland based company, Dirty Hippie. E.g. find them at CBEC Garden Centre Shop, 190 Pukepoto Road, Kaitaia. CBEC also stocks Dirty Hippie’s deodorant and lip balm which come in home compostable cardboard tubes.
  • You can get Mia Belle shampoo & conditioner bars, and deodorant & lip balm in cardboard tubes from Eko, 66F Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri
  • If you’re in Russell, check out Source Living soaps – we saw them packaged in plastic, but you could ask to have some set aside without being packaged!
  • Nudi Point face and body soap bars are sold at Shackleton’s Pharmacy, 89-91 Commerce Street, Kaitaia; and CBEC Garden Centre Shop, 190 Pukepoto Road, Kaitaia.
  • Get a range of locally made shampoo bars at EcoCentre Kaitaia, 5/42 Commerce Street (entrance on Bank Street), Kaitaia
  • Get Nature Body products such as natural deodorants in home compostable cardboard tubes from Four Square Waipapa, 1993 State Highway 10, Waipapa (also stocks the Aotearoad brand); and Hardy’s, Paihia Lanes, Paihia and 69 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri

Reusable Menstrual Products

There are zero waste, low cost alternatives to disposable sanitary items like tampons and pads:

  • Menstrual cups at Russell Pharmacy, 21 York Street, Russell; Hardy’s, 69 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; Countdown Kerikeri, 56 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; Health 2000, 84b Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; Unichem Kerikeri Pharmacy, 4/64 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri Four Square Waipapa, 1993 State Highway 10, Waipapa; EcoCentre Kaitaia, 5/42 Commerce Street (entrance on Bank Street), Kaitaia; Shackleton’s Pharmacy, 89-91 Commerce Street, Kaitaia; It’s Healthy Wholefoods, Shop 8 Plaza North, 210-222 Commerce Street, Kaitaia
  • Other – you can get sea sponges (used in the old days like a reusable tampon!) at Pallet Design, 86 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri

Shaving

Avoid plastic shavers that are designed to be disposable and go for 100% metal razors that will last you decades and only require the 100% metal and recyclable blades to be replaced (or sharpened with a leather strop!), and remember to use a bar of shaving soap instead of shaving foam that comes in an aerosol can (see above) – note, you’ll need a shaving brush to make this work. You can buy razors and replacement blades from Stone Store, 248 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri.

Ingredients for DIY cosmetics/toiletries

  • Coconut oil is an often-used ingredient for homemade toiletries like toothpaste and deodorant. Get it in your own jar (or an upcycled jar) from EcoCentre Kaitaia, 5/42 Commerce Street (entrance on Bank Street), Kaitaia. You can get Samoa Heritage coconut oil, which has no plastic seal around the lid, at Omaparadise, 328 State Highway 12, Omapere.
  • Baking Soda is an essential ingredient in lots of homemade toiletries such as toothpaste and deodorant. You can get it unpackaged in bulk from Kerikeri Bulk Foods Store, 92 Kerikeri Road or in upcycled and refillable glass jars from EcoCentre Kaitaia, 5/42 Commerce Street (entrance on Bank Street), Kaitaia.

Refillable/returnable toiletries

  • Nature Body products (e.g. sunscreen and deodorant) are packaged in either unlined cardboard (which is home compostable), or in glass pottles which can be returned to Nature Body to be refilled (and you’ll get $1 off your next purchase for every returned jar!). They’re stocked at Four Square Waipapa, 1993 State Highway 10, Waipapa and Hardy’s, Paihia Lanes, Paihia and 69 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri. 
  • Eko, 66F Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri – stocks bath salts in a bulk jar, BYO bags/containers

Other

  • Cotton Buds – Go Bamboo makes home compostable buds so you can avoid the single-use, unrecyclable plastic ones. Get them from Boatshed Cafe, 8 Clendon Esplanade, Rawene; Four Square Waipapa, 1993 State Highway 10, Waipapa; Four Square Paihia, 41 Williams Road, Paihia; Orange Frog, 2 Selwyn Road, Paihia; Hardy’s, Paihia Lanes, Paihia and 69 Kerikeri Road, Kerikeri; It’s Healthy Wholefoods, Shop 8 Plaza North, 210-222 Commerce Street, Kaitaia; and CBEC shop, 190 Pukepoto Road, Kaitaia.
  • Toilet Paper – Greencane and Smartass toilet paper are both wrapped in home compostable packaging. Greencane is availavle at Four Square Waipapa, 1993 State Highway 10, Waipapa. Smartass is sold at EcoCentre Kaitaia, 5/42 Commerce Street (entrance on Bank Street), Kaitaia


Reuse and Recycle

  • Food waste – food waste in a bin gets sent to landfill where it breaks down anaerobically, producing methane (a potent greenhouse gas). No! Here are some alternatives:
    • Home composting/worm farms/bokashi – Having a composting, worm farm or bokashi bin system at home is the best and cheapest way to deal with your food scraps. If you’d like help setting one up or working out what the best system would be for you, look out for Compost Connetion workshops, run by Ecosolutions across Northland, including the Far North. You can buy worm farm and bokashi systems from EcoSolutions at CBEC in Kaitaia (190 Pukepoto Road).
    • Dropping off your food scraps somewhere – if you don’t have a composting system set up, can you drop your food scraps off at your local community garden? For example, the Kaitaia community garden is happy for householders to drop off their food scraps at the compost at the gardens. If you aren’t sure what to do, have a chat at the EcoCentre and they’ll help you out!
    • Edible food waste – If you’re a business chucking out food that is still edible but not saleable, keep an eye out for Northland Food Rescue/Whakaora Kaian organisation rescuing and redistributing food otherwise destined for landfill through pataka and their local partners.organisations
  • E-waste – electronic waste is the world’s fastest growing waste stream, with huge environmental implications because of the toxins that can be leached from this waste, but also the loss of incredibly precious resources embedded in these items that are not recovered when the waste is dumped in landfill.
    • Repair: Rather than throwing you broken electronics out – have you considered trying to get them repaired first? You could pay someone to do it or look out for Repair or Fix-it Cafes where experts donate their time to fix people’s broken items for free at a designated repair event (usually run by community centres, churches or councils) – for example, the Paihia Repair Cafe is humming! 
    • Recycle: If your electronics really have given up the ghost, rather than chucking them out, take them to be recycled responsibly. You can do this at all transfer stations in the Far North at subsidised rates. Despite the subsidy, a small cost still applies for drop-off of e-waste for recycling (until the Government starts to regulate manufacturers of these products), but it’s a small cost relative to damage these items otherwise cause in landfill. Alternatively, you can drop off certain types of e-waste to Ecocentre Kaitaia, including laptops and batteries. There’s even someone on hand to try and refurbish the laptops before sending them for recycling if
  • Resilient Russell (formally Russell Recyclers) – this organisation helps local events to be zero waste, and has been allocated a space of land near the Transfer Station at Russell to carry out recycling operations and divert as much waste from landfill as possible – once this is up and running, the people of Russell will be able to take a variety of hard to recycle items there. The organisation also looks after a hot composting system for the community. 

Zero Waste Information and Support Networks

  • Para Kore – Para Kore is an amazing organisation working with marae, kura and Māori institutions and businesses to transition towards zero waste. Their resources/services are free and their regional kaiārahi are totally fabulous. Para Kore’s Kaiārahi for Te Hiku o Te Ika is Jared Hiakita and for Te Taitokerau is Ngariki Ngatae – so if you’re keen for some awhi with waste reduction, they’d be stoked to hear from you 🙂
  • EcoCentre Kaitaia, 8 South Road – Kaitaia’s environment centre is truly excellent for supporting individuals to live with less waste without breaking the bank. The centre stocks heaps of (affordable) products that help with low-waste living, the staff and volunteers are great sources of knowledge on living less wastefully, so great to have a chat with, and the centre runs regular workshops on all areas of sustainable living, including waste reduction. The centre is also the home of the Kaitaia Timebank, Plastic Free Kaitaia 2020, and is running a community garden project (see below).
  • CBEC, 190 Pukepoto Road, Kaitaia – CBEC is practically the home of zero waste in New Zealand (and perhaps even the world), and has been going since the late 1980s. At the CBEC headquarters, there’s a shop to help with day-to-day waste reduction. CBEC is also the umbrella organisation for EcoSolutions.
  • EcoSolutions – supports communities across the Far North to live sustainably, including with low-waste living. EcoSolutions also runs a waste audit system and an accreditation scheme for businesses, and does school education on sustainability and waste minimisation.
  • Paihia Zero Waste – a community group dedicated to bringing zero wastefulness and 100% vitality to the Bay of Islands. Paihia Zero Waste hosts zero waste events, supports the community to get passionate about waste reduction, and shares info in person and on its Facebook page.
  • Zero Waste Granny – Jane Banfield, based in Paihia, is committed to zero waste and to working alongside the community to reduce waste. Follow her story, tips and tricks on her Facebook.
  • Plastic Free Groups – woah there are so many plastic-free groups around the Far North who regularly provide info sessions and community support on waste reduction, share info on social media and online, run plastic-free events and make and share things like reusable bags and produce bags. For example, check out Plastic Free Kaitaia 2020Plastic Free KerikeriPlastic Free Paihia, and Plastic Free Kaeo.
  • Hokianga Environmental Protection Group – this group was born to oppose deep sea oil drilling, but its work has since expanded. One of the topics that it is taking action on is reducing plastic consumption in Hokianga and to raise awareness about the problem of plastics, particularly for the ocean. If you are interested in supporting their mahi, you may like to attend one of their meetings to find out how you can be involved.

Share and Exchange

  • Toy Libraries – reduce the wasteful over-consumption of toys and save money by joining a toy library! Check out toy libraries in Northland.
  • Timebanking – Timebanking and zero waste living are great companions. Through timebanking you can share skills and services without the exchange of money, making it a great way to reduce waste on a budget because you can harness skills of creating and repairing that exist in your community (repairing broken clothes or electronics, for example), or have someone pass these skills on to you (how to garden, how to build). Perhaps you have some of these skills already that you could pass on to someone else for time credits? If you’re in Kaitaia, you’re in luck, because there’s a local timebank, woohoo! 😀 Check it out. This timebank will soon be expanding across the Far North – yus!

Skills and Resourcefulness in Communities

  • Menzshed – provides a great opportunity for men of all ages to share tools and a workspace (reducing the wasteful overduplication of these resources) and to pass on skills of woodworking and other trades. Menzsheds all round the country frequently offer communities the service of repairing broken items like furniture (at a small cost), and also creating bespoke items for community and charitable purposes. There are several Menzsheds across Northland, so look up your local!
  • Community gardens – community gardens are an excellent way for residents to get kai without packaging, and to learn skills of growing food and setting up composts – both very useful skills for low-waste living. Community gardens are always looking for volunteers to help out and come along to working bees, so if you are interested in picking up gardening skills, or if you are already a keen gardener and would like to have the opportunity to share your skill with others, consider getting involved with your local community garden. Check out EcoCentre Kaitaia‘s community garden project, or the beautiful community garden in Russell!
  • Sewing, crafts, knitting, crochet – We’re of the view that sewing, crafts, knitting and crochet are all key skills for combating waste in our lives (whether it’s the ability to make your own produce bags and beeswax wraps, knit a dishcloth, or repair broken clothes). If you’re keen to pick up crafting skills, check out your local REAP that may run crafty and creative classes and activities from time to time. EcoCentre Kaitaia also regularly runs crafting workshops, and sewing bees for the awesome Kai-Taia Kete reusable bag project!



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