Open daily, 10am–5pm, Free

419 Great King Street Dunedin, New Zealand

Museum getting in the kegs

As part of its commitment to sustainability, Otago Museum is very pleased to be signing on with Dunedin start-up company Spout Alternatives, one of the first in the city.

From Monday 11 November, all full fat milk consumed on the Museum premises will come via keg, removing approximately 7405 plastic 2L milk bottles per year from the waste and recycling streams.

Otago Museum has this year established a Sustainable Operations group, which includes staff from every work area of the organisation, and is tasked with coming up with, investigating, and, wherever possible, instigating practical solutions to reduce the Museum’s environmental footprint. The group is focused on three key areas – waste, travel, and energy. The milk kegs and relationship with Spout Alternatives fits into both the waste and energy strands, and is considered a very easy win for the institution.

Murray Bayly, Commercial Director, says, “It’s really important that we start changing the way we think about this stuff. We were really excited to read the coverage that Spout had when they started out with the Corner Store so we wanted to look into how it would work in our business. With 339 000 visitors through the door each year – and lots of them drinking coffee! – this is a real chance to make a difference.”

The cost of the premium, locally sourced milk is higher than the commercially supplied product, but the Museum café won’t be increasing its prices at this stage. Murray explains, “An institution like Otago Museum has to lead from the front with some of this stuff and while the cost per cup of coffee is higher, we don’t want that to affect our café customers. We’ll see how it goes but we’re really happy this project is getting off the ground.”

Spout Alternatives CEO and Co-Founder Jo Mohan says, “"It's awesome to see an iconic Dunedin institution leading the way in reducing plastic waste. We hope this encourages more Dunedin businesses to follow in their footsteps"”.

All full fat milk consumed in the Museum staff room, the Friends of the Museum room, the café kitchen,  and by the Education programmes will also be from the kegs, meaning no more plastic full milk bottles anywhere in the building.