Fill up your water bottle in Upper Hutt cafés

Upper Hutt City Council is working with local cafés to make fresh water accessible to all.  

UPPER HUTT, Wellington NZ, 02 NOV 2018—Upper Hutt City Council is committed to ensuring the healthy choice is the easy choice in our community. With warmer seasons on the way, the importance of staying hydrated also increases. Water is the best choice for hydration, but can sometimes be difficult to access when out. Buying plastic bottles filled with water is both hard on your pocket, and the environment. A reusable drink bottle is much more sustainable and affordable.

Upper Hutt City Council has been working with local cafés, so that reusable drink bottles can now be refilled for free. This reduces plastic waste, and increases access to fresh water throughout the city.

Many cafés and bakeries are on board, and happy to refill drink bottles even for those who are not paying customers. They only ask that reusable bottles are clean, and that paying customers have priority.  A blue window sticker with BYOB (bring your own bottle) on it is displayed at participating cafés and bakeries. This way, members of the public can confidently ask for their bottle to be refilled without potentially being turned away.

This initiative is part of wider work that Upper Hutt City Council is doing to promote a healthier community. Upper Hutt City Council has also been working with Regional Public Health to create Food and Beverage Guidelines which will be implemented over the next 2 years. These Guidelines are similar to what was implemented by the DHBs in 2016 (which are available at www.health.govt.nz/system/files/documents/publications/national-healthy-food-and-drink-policy-sept20-16.pdf [389 KB]). Other Councils around New Zealand have also begun work in this area, including Auckland Council.

Upper Hutt City Council has revamped the café at H2O Xtream aquatic centre (Deep Café) ensuring that healthy choices are available and affordable. Council-run events will have healthier food options available, and it will now be easier to access fresh water when in the city. Upper Hutt City Council is also encouraging schools to adopt a water and milk only policy, and use healthier fundraising options.