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Article

Less Food Wasted? Changes to New Zealanders’ Household Food Waste and Related Behaviours Due to the 2020 COVID-19 Lockdown

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Te Kura Mātai Taiao/School of Environment, University of Auckland, Auckland 1010, New Zealand
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Department of Human Nutrition, University of Otago, Dunedin 9016, New Zealand
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School of Nursing, University of Auckland, Auckland 1023, New Zealand
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Discipline of Nutrition, Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, University of Auckland, Auckland 1023, New Zealand
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Centre for Hauora and Health, Massey University, Palmerston North 4442, New Zealand
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Department of Communication Studies, University of Antwerp, 2000 Antwerpen, Belgium
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School of Population Health, University of Auckland, Auckland 1142, New Zealand
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Felicitas Schneider, Stefan Lange and Thomas Schmidt
Sustainability 2021, 13(18), 10006; https://doi.org/10.3390/su131810006
Received: 5 July 2021 / Revised: 29 August 2021 / Accepted: 30 August 2021 / Published: 7 September 2021
Food waste is a crisis of our time, yet it remains a data gap in Aotearoa New Zealand’s (NZ’s) environmental reporting. This research contributes to threshold values on NZ’s food waste and seeks to understand the impact of the 2020 COVID-19 lockdown on household food waste in NZ. The data presented here form part of the ‘Covid Kai Survey’, an online questionnaire that assessed cooking and food planning behaviours during the 2020 lockdown and retrospectively before lockdown. Of the 3028 respondents, 62.5% threw out food ‘never’/‘rarely’ before lockdown, and this number increased to 79.0% during lockdown. Participants who wasted food less frequently during lockdown were more likely to be older, work less than full-time, and have no children. During lockdown, 30% and 29% of those who ‘frequently’ or ‘sometimes’ struggled to have money for food threw out food ‘sometimes or more’; compared with 20% of those who rarely struggled to have money for food (p < 0.001). We found that lower levels of food waste correlated with higher levels of cooking confidence (p < 0.001), perceived time (p < 0.001), and meal planning behaviours (p < 0.001). Understanding why food waste was generally considerably lower during lockdown may inform future initiatives to reduce food waste, considering socio-economic and demographic disparities. View Full-Text
Keywords: food waste and loss prevention; household waste; COVID-19; evaluation; food purchasing; cooking; planning; financial security food waste and loss prevention; household waste; COVID-19; evaluation; food purchasing; cooking; planning; financial security
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MDPI and ACS Style

Sharp, E.L.; Haszard, J.; Egli, V.; Roy, R.; Te Morenga, L.; Teunissen, L.; Decorte, P.; Cuykx, I.; De Backer, C.; Gerritsen, S. Less Food Wasted? Changes to New Zealanders’ Household Food Waste and Related Behaviours Due to the 2020 COVID-19 Lockdown. Sustainability 2021, 13, 10006. https://doi.org/10.3390/su131810006

AMA Style

Sharp EL, Haszard J, Egli V, Roy R, Te Morenga L, Teunissen L, Decorte P, Cuykx I, De Backer C, Gerritsen S. Less Food Wasted? Changes to New Zealanders’ Household Food Waste and Related Behaviours Due to the 2020 COVID-19 Lockdown. Sustainability. 2021; 13(18):10006. https://doi.org/10.3390/su131810006

Chicago/Turabian Style

Sharp, Emma L., Jillian Haszard, Victoria Egli, Rajshri Roy, Lisa Te Morenga, Lauranna Teunissen, Paulien Decorte, Isabelle Cuykx, Charlotte De Backer, and Sarah Gerritsen. 2021. "Less Food Wasted? Changes to New Zealanders’ Household Food Waste and Related Behaviours Due to the 2020 COVID-19 Lockdown" Sustainability 13, no. 18: 10006. https://doi.org/10.3390/su131810006

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