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We've switched to 100% compostable serve-ware for public events, replacing all single-use cups and hot food packaging with plant-based alternatives that are turned into quality compost in just three months.  

Using carefully-sourced plant-based serve-ware from reputable local suppliers Innocent Packaging and Ecoware means everything that goes into the hands of our customers is completely compostable. Plus, we've saved 2.2 million plastic items from landfill! Instead of plastic, our serve-ware is made from PLA (Poly Lactic Acid or Plant Plastic), CPLA (Crystalised Poly Lactic Acid), Wheatstraw, Bagasse, or FSC Grown or Recycled Paper using plant-based and non-toxic inks, dyes and glues. The carbon offset calculated shows we've saved is 8.23 tonnes of CO from using 100% compostable serve-ware alone!

We've saved 2.2 million plastic items from landfill including 750K cups, 12,000 plates, 317K straws, 65,000 pieces of cutlery and 592K coffee cups!

If we do use packaging from other suppliers that we give to our customers, we make sure they are also 100% compostable, including Dr Feelgood Frozen Pops, Proper Crisps and QB's Crunchy Cheese Snacks. All these compostable items then go into one of our many compost bins located around the arena thanks to Method

Plus we've teamed up with some other forward thinking companies including Green Gorilla who provide diversion services for all our waste and recycling from behind the bars to ensure contamination does not occur. 

It's inevitable that some products such as soft drinks will come into the arena in non-compostable plastics. To ensure non-contamination, these bottles will be collected behind the bars for contamination-free recycling. Because our recycling is untainted by other waste, we can be sure it is not rejected when delivered to specialist recyclers.

We also directly send our compostable waste to Envirofert (a local composting plant), where it is transformed into quality compost in the space of just three months! Compostable packaging is transferred to Envirofert's Tuakau facility where it is aerobically heat-processed and matured into quality compost for use on farms and gardens. Envirofert use FORCED-AERATION composting, which means they blow air through piles of shredded waste, which comprises not only our cups and packaging, but also tree trimmings, cardboard and food waste. Contrary to mistaken belief, the compost is not heated, and the heat is produced by the aerobic bacteria that are active in breaking the organic matter down. The heat produced is enough to cause full chemical decompostition of PLA. Your own compost heap at home may get warm, but nothing like as hot enough for as long a time as the waste at Envirofert. 

For more info on what our serve-ware is made out of, check out this handy fact sheet.

Other sustainability wins & goals 

  • We are currently replacing all faulty lights with energy-saving LEDs. 

  • Only using mobile tickets for our events unless absolutely essential, saving around 450K paper tickets each year (based on 10% of people using paper tickets).  

  • We began measuring our waste and recycling volumes in 2022, and a landfill diversion target of 75% by 2023 has been set.  

  • We are no longer going to have landfill bins in the arena for public events. 

  • Spark Arena is conveniently located close to public transport, buses and accommodation, reducing the need for private vehicles/transport. 

  • Our food and drink outlets provide vegan options including dumplings, falafel, fries, potato crips, wine, RTD and beer. 

  • The arena bees are busily making honey using nectar collected from our backstage garden.