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More Than 1 In 3 Kiwis Call For New Food Labelling System To Help Minimise Waste - Research

Data published by HelloFresh shows that three quarters (76.4%) of Kiwis surveyed say they understand current food labelling, more than half (55.5%) say they discard food past its best before as they’re afraid it will make them sick

  • Over a third (41%) estimate they throw away at least $720 of food per annum due to best before labelling, while 8% estimate their waste at more than $2,500 each year
  • Respondents say a combination of new policy (75.4%), personal responsibility (75.4%) and education (66.0%) are needed to reduce food waste
  • HelloFresh is calling on government to do their bit and consider regulatory change in food labelling to reduce New Zealand’s food waste

 HelloFresh SE (“HelloFresh”), global integrated food solutions group and New Zealand’s leading meal kit service, has today released research in partnership with Kantar, revealing that a quarter (25.2%) of Kiwis surveyed waste food at least once a week, and over a third (38.6%) believe a new food labelling system is needed to minimise food waste in New Zealand.

HelloFresh believes the innovative time-temperature indicator (TTI) technology is key to addressing this change. The technology shows the shelf life of products in real time, taking into account storage or temperature conditions, removing the uncertainty around what food is edible, and what is not.

Government initiatives to reduce food waste over the last few years have gone some way to address the issue, such as funding for Kai Commitment and Whangaihia te Whānau, as well as partnerships with the University of Otago to better understand reducing food waste in the retirement sector.

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The current food labelling system in New Zealand, use-by and best-before dates*, hasn’t been updated since it was introduced over fifty years ago. With a majority of Kiwis (93.5%) saying they are more cautious of food waste because of the current cost of living crisis, HelloFresh is urging policy makers to introduce new innovative solutions such as food labelling technology to save edible food from being wasted.

Three quarters of Kiwis surveyed (75.4%) say that policy makers are responsible for reducing food waste, and HelloFresh Australasia CEO, Tom Rutledge, agrees saying regulatory change is needed in New Zealand. “Our research shows that over half of Kiwis (55.5%) are throwing away food that has passed its best-before date because they are afraid it might make them sick, with a further 27 per cent saying they are simply following the instructions on the packaging. While our meal kits inherently reduce food waste due to their pre-portioned ingredients, we see big potential for the government to offer further support for Kiwis to reduce food waste through innovative technology and educating consumers on the intention of best before labelling,” says Rutledge.

HelloFresh is committed to reducing food waste across the whole value chain – from sourcing ingredients directly, to supplying customers with exactly the right amount of ingredients needed to create delicious, nutritious meals. Minimising food waste is an ongoing priority for the company, and New Zealand operations has seen a significant reduction of 35 per cent in physical food waste since implementing supply chain improvements such as managing stock inventory and forecasting customer orders.

HelloFresh continues to identify innovative partnerships to further reduce food waste and partners with local food rescue charity, KiwiHarvest, who then deliver it to people in need. In 2023, HelloFresh New Zealand donated the equivalent of 750,803 meals to the charity.

For more information about HelloFresh, visit

Notes to editors
This research was conducted by Kantar New Zealand on behalf of HelloFresh in an online survey targeted at New Zealanders between the ages of 18 to 65. 1,520 responses were collected between 20 December 2023 and 7 January 2024. Data tables are available on request.

*A use-by date is used for foods that must be eaten before a certain time for health or safety reasons. A best-before date is used for food that should be safe after a certain date but may have reduced quality. [1]

About HelloFresh
HelloFresh SE is a global food solutions group and the world's leading meal kit company. The HelloFresh Group consists of six brands that provide customers with high quality food and recipes for different meal occasions. The Company was founded in Berlin in November 2011 and operates in the USA, the UK, Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, Australia, Austria, Switzerland, Canada, New Zealand, Sweden, France, Denmark, Norway, Italy, Ireland and Spain. In Q1 2023 HelloFresh delivered over 278 million meals and reached 8.11 million active customers. HelloFresh SE went public on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange in November 2017 and is currently traded on the MDAX (Mid-Cap German Stock Market Index). The HelloFresh Group has offices in Berlin, Saarbrücken, New York, Chicago, Boulder, London, Amsterdam, Sydney, Toronto, Auckland, Paris, Copenhagen, Milan, Dublin and Barcelona.

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