Sustainable food operations

AUT’s vision for sustainable food involves providing food that is healthy, affordable, low carbon, eliminates waste streams, and enhances water, soil and biodiversity.

Sustainable food targets

Sustainable food covers multiple aspects and this is reflected in our range of targets, which include:

  • AUT cafes, catering and the School of Hospitality and Tourism reducing waste to landfill by 50% by 2025
  • The new A1 café (at North Campus) will be the most sustainable café at AUT, providing fruit and vegetables grown on campus

What we're doing to meet targets:

  • AUT has identified the land area needed to plant 100 fruit trees and for a herb and vegetable garden at North Campus to service the A1 café
  • Identified the range of fruit trees needed at North Campus
  • Incorporating the desire for waste reduction initiatives in the tendering process with food companies

Food initiatives on campus

These are some of the ways we're implementing sustainable food plans at AUT.

Organic waste

Organic waste collections are used at the main catering kitchen and cafes and all seven teaching kitchens in the School of Hospitality and Tourism. These divert waste from landfill and create a valuable resource – compost. There are also eight worm farms beside the School of Hospitality and Tourism's rooftop garden, processing food waste from the kitchens which is then used on the garden. These are also used as an educational resource for the school's students.

Mara kai at South Campus

Mara kai (food gardens) were established by students at the South Campus in 2020 and the vegetables harvested for meals.

What you can do

You can contribute to better sustainable food practices by:

  • Buying food that is locally grown or produced
  • Buying food from bulk food shops that are zero waste and/or with sustainable packaging
  • Making ethical considerations when buying food – like buying Fairtrade and Trade Aid goods
  • Choosing healthy food options that include lots of fruit and vegetables

AUT's sustainability targets

Learn about all of our sustainability targets, and what we're doing to achieve them, in the AUT Sustainability Roadmap.

Sustainability Roadmap