Mountain flax banner image

Have an idea to minimise waste? Apply for $10k

Monday 14 November, 2022

If you have a great new idea how to minimise waste going to landfill then apply for funding from the Waste Minimisation Fund.

Every year Gisborne District Council awards up to $10,000 for a project that diverts waste from landfill. Applications for this year’s fund are open now until 24 February 2023.

Last year, Gisborne’s Native Garden Nursery successfully applied for this fund.

As a result, owners Lana and Nigel Hope now have a production line to make paper pots for native seedlings instead of using thousands of plastic pots.

Mrs Hope says they knew they had to find an alternative to plastic for years.

“The nursery industry typically uses single-use plastic pots and has been tagged by the Government to be part of a recycling/stewardship scheme by July 2023.  We feel that using a paper pot is one step better, cutting out the need for any recycling.”

Mrs Hope says even though they always ask their customers to return all their plastics, which then get reused for a number of years, they were still aware a lot weren’t being returned and that they’d eventually end up in a landfill or worse, out on conservation planting sites.

“These paper pots can be planted directly into the soil and allow the roots to grow through.

“They are made of wood fibre from certified sustainably managed forests.

“It’s an exciting project.  From our first trials back in February we were able to use some of this trial stock for planting as part of Council’s Waingake Restoration Project.”

Council Waste Minimisation Lead Charlotte Phelps says she knows some of the best ideas and deliverers of waste minimisation initiatives are within our community.

“The funding is there to support these initiatives. We are looking to fund new projects that contribute to waste minimisation, avoid harm and improve resource efficiency.

“The fund is for trialling or supporting new waste minimisation initiatives rather than giving ongoing support for operational activities - an individual can be granted up to $10,000 of funding or, the $10,000 can be dispersed between several recipients - no more than $10,000 will be granted collectively.”

Alongside Native Garden Nursery, other past grantees of this fund include:

  • NZ Baby Supplies with an initiative to provide cloth nappies to new parents to reduce the number of disposable nappies in landfill
  • Super Grans’ project to dehydrate and pack produce for the community that would otherwise go to landfill
  • Tairawhiti Environment Centre’s project to reduce the total quantity of single-use cups going to landfill by setting up an “Again Again” system and working with cafes in our community.

If you’ve got an idea and think it could be next.

Visit our website for more information and the application form.

Pictures by Darnelle Timbs


Wharariki - Mountain flax

Rewa Rewa

Rewa Rewa