By Rob StewartNew Zealanders are turning to local ingredients in new ways, like spirals and pasta tubes, and some are taking advantage of what’s become the most popular way to eat out.
The country’s economy is booming, so people are increasingly searching for ways to take advantage of the nation’s plentiful supply of fresh food.
And while many are finding ways to cut out the middleman, some are trying to make the best of it.
The food trend is catching on with people across the country, says a survey by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment.
The ministry says about 30 per cent of New Zealanders say they would like to cut the price of a meal.
Food prices in the country have risen by nearly 10 per cent since 2015.
The price of an average pizza, for example, is $7.35 in the New Zealand dollar.
But many Kiwis are trying something a little different, like making their own pasta, using ingredients they have on hand and then making their way back to the restaurant.
The latest innovation: making a pasta tube.
The tubes have a lid and they hold up to 10 times more pasta than regular pasta tubes.
That’s because the pasta is packed in a tube instead of in a bag.
The makers of the tubes say they make them in small batches and then sell them on the internet.
It’s cheaper than buying them in a store.
But there’s a catch: they have to be homemade, meaning they must be homemade.
“It’s a little bit of a gamble,” says Mike Gannon, who’s made the tubes for 20 years.
He started making them himself about a year ago.
He’s now selling them on his website.
“I was thinking, how can I make a lot of money doing this?”
Gannon says he started by cutting a piece of cardboard.
Then he used a box cutter to cut off the cardboard, using some of the extra cardboard.
He cut the cardboard into a spiral shape and then added some noodles.
He filled the tube with the noodles, then filled it up again.
He says he’s also sold them online for around $1 a tube.
Gannon has made more than 50 tubes over the past few years.
He has one for every size of person he sells it to, he says.
Gannon’s business is booming.
He makes about 100 tubes a week.
He uses about 50 per cent more noodles and about 20 per cent less pasta than he used to.
He plans to keep making them, but says he might not have to make more tubes in the future.
If you’re looking for a new way to have pasta, Gannon suggests that if you’re in New Zealand, make your own pasta.
You can buy a pasta tub at a restaurant for about $3 to $4.
“If you want to try something new, you can do it on your own,” he says, adding that the tubes are a fun way to get fresh ingredients into your diet.