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The Rabobank-KiwiHarvest Food Waste survey found households were throwing away 12.2 per cent of the food they bought down from 13.4 per cent last year.
The survey of 1500 people found households were throwing away 12.2 per cent of the food they bought, down from 13.4 per cent last year.
That translates to $1510 of food being thrown out per household each year.
But the growing cost of food meant the overall value of food being put in the bin has risen from $3.1 bilion to $3.2 billion.
Respondents were mostly concerned about the waste of money involved, waste with this cited as a key concern by 74 per cent.
Respondents in the Gen Z group (born between 1995 and 2002) estimated they wasted significantly less than last year (19.2 per cent form 28.2 per cent). However, they continue to be the most wasteful of all age groups.
Rabobank head of sustainable business development Blake Holgate said with high food inflation over the last year he expected to see bigger changes in food waste behaviours and attitudes but the survey results show they remain largely unchanged.
Types of food ending up in the bin were in line with last year with vegetables making up 38 per cent bread 29 per cent and fruit 25 per cent.
KiwiHarvest food rescue charity founder Deborah Manning said improvements in a few key areas have helped drive the small drop in estimated food waste.
"One of the major positives in the survey findings was that more Kiwis are now correctly defining what is meant by a best-before food label (63 per cent versus 57 per cent previously).
"And this flowed through to a sizable lift in the number of people saying they routinely eat food after best-before dates (18 per cent compared to 13 per cent previously) when the food is not damaged or perished."
People are also doing better planning, eating leftovers and buying less food, Manning said.