United Fresh has adopted the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals as a starting point for our sustainability journey.

We are currently prioritising these goals for our organisation and pan-produce industry.

The United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals are the blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all. They address global challenges, including those related to poverty, inequality, climate, environmental degradation, prosperity, peace and justice. The target to achieve these goals is 2030.

You can read more on the United Nations here.


Towards Achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals

United Fresh Guidelines for the New Zealand Fresh Produce Value Chain

This guide is aimed at supporting individual produce industry businesses and organisations, from paddock to plate, to take the initiative and start contributing towards the achievement of the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

Download guide here.

2023 Sustainable Development Goals


Watch Dr Hans Maurer and Jacob Lawes' presentation below:

Towards Achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals Guidelines for the New Zealand Fresh Produce Value Chain

Recorded at the United Fresh and IFPA Sustainability Workshop in November 2023.



Ban on single-use plastics

From 1 JULY 2023, the following items will be banned or phased out in New Zealand:

  • Single-use plastic produce labels
  • Single-use plastic drinking straws
  • Single-use plastic cutlery
  • Single-use plastic plates, trays & platters
  • Single-use plastic bowls without lids

Note: Some exemptions apply to specific items. Compostable plastic or ‘plant-based’ plastic alternatives are also banned (except for produce labels).

The ban applies to all businesses and organisations, and includes retailers, suppliers, importers, not-for-profits, government, and other community groups.

The downloadable Fact Sheet explains the ban in more detail.

Support for businesses


New Report Outlines Sustainability Opportunities for Produce Industry

The International Federation for Produce Standards (IFPS) has released a new report outlining sustainable practices for the produce industry. The report, titled "Summary- IFPS Sustainability Symposium," highlights the need for sustainable practices to ensure the long-term health and success of the industry.

The report was developed following the IFPS Symposium, which brought together industry leaders from around the world in December 2022 to discuss the challenges and opportunities facing the produce industry. The symposium identified key areas where the industry can make a significant impact on sustainability, including waste reduction, water conservation, and responsible sourcing.

"We are thrilled to release this report, which outlines the challenges faced by the industry and a pathway toward practical solutions for the produce industry to become more sustainable," said Rebecca Lee, Chair of IFPS. "As consumers increasingly prioritize sustainability, it is essential for the industry to take action and implement sustainable practices that benefit the environment, communities, and the long-term health of the industry."

The report highlights the importance of collaboration within the industry to promote sustainability. "We need to work together to implement sustainable practices and ensure the long-term success of the produce industry," said Lee. "We hope this report will serve as a roadmap for the industry to make meaningful progress towards sustainability."

To read the full report, visit the IFPS website here.