New Zealand investigates water footprints

For fresh produce marketing in Australia and New Zealand
Tobias Gourlay

BY TOBIAS GOURLAY

New Zealand investigates water footprints

Zespri and Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry fund research into water footprint of green kiwifruit

New Zealand investigates water footprints

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The production of one green kiwifruit requires 42l of water, according to researchers in New Zealand.

To establish a way of measuring the environmental impact of a product's water footprint, kiwifruit marketer Zespri and the government's Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry funded a study carried out by Landcare Research, Plant & Food Research and AgriLink New Zealand.

Results showed most of the 42l was 'green water', coming directly from rainwater, with around 10 per cent 'grey water', needed to dilute orchard inputs such as nitrogen fertiliser, and 5 per cent was 'blue water', which is renewable surface or groundwater used for irrigation.

Dr David Tanner, Zespri's general manager of quality and innovation, said: "Zespri is future-proofing itself as customers become increasingly focused on the water footprint of the products they purchase."

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