Feed CPIT! Fruit and Vege packs now a weekly fixture on campus

News News & events

20 Mar 2015

If an apple a day keeps the doctor away, imagine what a whole bag of fruit and vegetables will do for the health and wellbeing of CPIT students.

CPIT is the first tertiary institution in Christchurch to use the co-operative, St Albans hub coordinator Matt Holmes said.

"CPIT is a great way for the co-op to fulfil its potential reach on a scale that we haven't had previously, in a way that fits well with our ethos of being able to provide healthy affordable food to Christchurch people."

Following a recent free trial, CPIT's involvement in the Fruit and Vege Co-op has now officially begun. The Christchurch-wide initiative distributes about 2000 fresh produce packs across the city from 10 community hubs.


Customers, including students, pay $12 for a seven kilogram pre-ordered bag of healthy goodness that would cost about $30 in the supermarket, CPIT's student events coordinator Storm Geldenhuis said.

In a trial week, 72 students at Madras Street and 28 at CPIT Trades campus took advantage of give-away packs.

"What's been nice is the take-up of trades students, especially with the perception that they are the pie and V consumers, so this is a big step in the right direction for student health, she said"

This student-only wellbeing initiative would be limited to 100 orders per week and so far involved a distribution team of 10 staff, 20 volunteers including six nutrition and health students, who were also using the opportunity to gain placement hours, Student Voice Jo Carter said.

"The options on campus and the cost of food has an impact on students. For example chips are cheap, and while this is not necessarily what they want to eat, it's what's affordable," Carter said.

About 15 students had put in orders for the first delivery, roughly half from each campus, Pre-ordered packs would be distributed from both campuses on Wednesday afternoons each week.

It was hoped orders would increase in the next few weeks, as students became more aware of the scheme.

Health and nutrition students would also be coming up with a campaign to promote the wider health benefits of fruit and vegetables. If orders dropped too far below 10, the initiative would not be viable.

While the packs contain mostly basic seasonal produce, anything unusual such as eggplant (aubergine) would be accompanied by a recipe with preparation instructions. 

The Fruit and Vegetable Co-op began in October 2011 in the eastern suburbs to enable families and whānau to buy affordable seasonal fresh fruit and vegetables. Initially it was a partnership between the community, Christchurch Cathedral, and Community and Public Health (part of the Canterbury District Health Board) but is now more of a community and health sector initiative. Anyone can join. Check out the website: http://www.cph.co.nz/About-Us/Fruit-and-Vege-Cooperative/

Volunteers are also welcome at the St Albans hub, where the produce is packed, at the Beulah Church carpark on Springfield Road. Contact Matt Holmes mob 027 533 9385.

CPIT students can place an order with Aaron at CPIT Trades SSB Monday to Tuesday 2-4pm (delivery 2.30-3.30pm Wednesdays) and Rachael at Madras Street Campus Rakaia Block X117 Monday to Thursday 9.30 am to 12.30pm Mon – Thurs (delivery CPSA 3.30 to 4.30 on Wednesdays). Produce needs to be paid for in person.