Don't fancy chopping? Now New World will do it for you
Too busy to chop your own veg? Maybe your supermarket has the answer.
Hamiltons' New World Te Rapa, and Tauranga's New World Brookfield, are offering bulk bins of pre-cut vegetables to customers, in a bid to make healthy eating more convenient.
But do the bins just cater for the lazy - or are they a great idea to help more people eat healthy food?
According to statistics from the charity behind the 5+ A Day campaign, more than 90 per cent of Kiwis know the rules about how much fruit and vegetables to eat. However, only about a third of us follow them.
The owner of New World Te Rapa, Chris Grace, said he picked up the idea from the chain's Tauranga store.
Te Rapa added the bins to its produce section five years ago, and Grace said the idea was slowly gaining ground.
"The popularity is slowly lifting, but a lot of people hadn't caught onto it."
The bins are most popular with professionals popping in to grab lunch, or the elderly who "stand around waiting for us to cut it fresh" in the morning.
"It eliminates any waste for them. They can pick out exactly how much they want of the different types, mushrooms, or courgettes or cucumbers or whatever, and the other factor is they don't have to go through the physical exercise of cutting up pumpkins or cauliflowers," he said.
"Some of the older people find that quite difficult."
New World's pre-cut bulk vegetables sold for $9.99 a kilogram, which made the mushrooms cheaper than some pre-chopped and wrapped options.
But, the vegetables were, for the most part, more expensive than buying whole.
Grace said the bins worked because "people are looking for still healthy options, but things that they can do quite quickly".
"I think it's that convenience factor."
As for whether it shows New Zealanders up as lazy, Grace said that was not the point.
"I heard a comment about that. Someone said it does away with the family getting together at night time and cutting up the vegetables together and all that family time.
"I suppose I would probably look at it and say it probably gives you a bit more time to sit at the table and share that family time over the meal rather than the preparation."
Produce manager, Mehul Patel, said the vegetables - and fruit when it was on offer, was replaced every three days.
He focuses on different vegetables for each season.
While the bins were not the most popular part of the produce section, customers complained when they disappear, he said.
So far the idea had not been taken up by any other New World stores.
The chief executive of the NZ Nutrition Foundation, Sue Pollard, said when it came to vegetables and fruit nutrition "wasn't a very complicated story".
"The fresher they are and the closer to meal time you process them, the better they are.
"We always encourage people to prepare and cook as much as they can at home."
However, pre-cut vegetables were not a bad option for those running out of time, as they are still better than having no vegetables at all.
Pollardsaid the frequency with which the vegetables were replaced was not a problem either as the nutritional value would not decrease significantly, except for some of the water-soluble nutrients.
Pre-cut vegetables were more about an easy way of people getting vegetables into their meals, and that was a positive, she said
"The main thing about that is it is a convenient way of getting [vegetables] into people who might not otherwise eat them.
- Ministry of Health statistics show 69 per cent of women eat 3+ fruit and veg a day, and 64 per cent for men
- One serving is about one handful, so a child's serving is smaller than an adult's.