Christchurch (Ōtautahi) is the largest city in the South Island of New Zealand and the seat of the Canterbury Region. The urban area is home to 377,200 residents (2020), and the territorial authority has 385,500 people, which makes it the second-most populous city in New Zealand after Auckland. The Avon River flows through the centre of the city, with an urban park located along its banks (from Wikipedia).

Food truck in Cathedral Square

Canterbury produces 61% of the nation’s supply of wheat, 51.1% of its barley stocks and 43.7% of its supply of oats, has 25,065 hectares of horticultural land, the largest area in New Zealand. The largest crops are potatoes (4,330 ha), peas and beans (2,700 ha), wine grapes (1,770 ha), berries (1,100 ha), and onions (1,000 ha). The region produces half of the New Zealand’s mushrooms, nuts and berries. Dairy and beef cattle and sheep populate the Canterbury plains and foothills of the Southern Alps.

Some highlights of cristchurch’s food System

Roimata Food commons

Roimata Food Commons is a community and food resilience project in Woolston, Christchurch. It started in 2017 with the planting of 60+ heritage fruit and nut trees and over 500 South Island endemic native trees, shrubs and grasses.

The orchard areas are slowly transitioning into food forest based systems that will include a multitude of food producing and support plant layers.

Find more about Roimata Food Commons here.

CAnterBury Food Blog

The Canterbury Food Blog features stories about innovative Canterbury food initiatives.

Read posts from the Canterbury Food Blog here.


At a hui in Canterbury in 2013, attendees developed a vision of “a patchwork of food producing hotspots woven like a ribbon into the fabric of our community”. The Food Resilience Network evolved from this vision and working together with the Christchurch City Council, the developed the Food Resilience Action Plan and the Edible Canterbury Charter.

“Food resilience is the ability of all households within the area of Greater

Christchurch to meet their food needs and to ensure that the food system

this depends on can withstand external shocks (such as natural disasters,

economic challenges or social upheaval).

“This implies a localised food system that is ecologically sustainable (using principles of

organics, permaculture, agro-ecology etc for example), economically viable and enhances

the well-being of communities’ physical,mental, emotional and spiritual health.”

Food Resilience Network (2014)

REad more about Edible Canterbury here.


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