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Kohunga kutai: a natural solution for a plastic problem

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Natural fibre rope for mussel spat.
Credit: Ngāti Manuhiri Settlement Trust

Aquaculture is a growing industry in Aotearoa. It offers a healthy way to feed the world's growing population which can be achieved in a sustainable way. Plastic materials are commonly used in aquaculture however, which can be degraded over time, and can cause problems in the marine environment. This poses a challenge for our mussel farms which have typically used plastic socks to seed and grow kūtai (mussels). And we know that plastic in our ocean is a big problem.

Recently, western science and mātauranga Māori have come together to create natural solutions to the created problem of plastic. Innovation and diversity of knowledge aims to benefit mussel aquaculture and people, and enhance the mauri of our marine ecosystems.

Travel online to Mahurangi Warkworth to:

  • explore the importance of our marine ecology and the impact of plastic
  • discover the science and mātauranga building a sustainable aquaculture industry
  • meet the experts who are collaborating to innovate on positive solutions
  • find ways to protect our coastal waters from plastic pollution.


All the field trip material including videos, a Google Earth for Web tour, background material and online quizzes will be available from 7 March 2022. This is during SeaWeek–Celebrate connection to our seas.

Enrol in this trip to receive supporting communication and resources from the LEARNZ team and connect with field trip experts in our live web conferences.

Teacher says.
From a previous LEARNZ Sustainable Seas online field trip

United Nations.

UN SDG Goal 14

This online field trip supports the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), especially Goal 14: LIFE BELOW WATER: To conserve and sustainably use the world's oceans, seas and marine resources.


This trip is kindly supported by: