A New Member of the Odd Bunch

Thanks to a bumper LeaderBrand South Island crop, asparagus will be joining Countdown’s hugely successful Odd Bunch programme, a first in its four-year history.

Odd Bunch, which was launched by Countdown in 2017, aims to help reduce food waste by sourcing more produce from growers (including the slightly weird and wonderful looking) and make fruit and vegetables more affordable for New Zealand shoppers.

Mike Arnold, LeaderBrand’s asparagus grower noted that they are currently in the middle of a bumper crop season for asparagus, with temperatures perfect for growing.

“We’re at the peak of our very short season and we are picking the spears as fast as we can. We’ve got excessive volumes of asparagus and we’d hate to see spears going to waste. Entering into Countdown’s Odd Bunch programme means that we can now offer more Kiwis’ the chance to try asparagus for the very first time.

“A few Kiwis might not have tried asparagus before, so we think that this programme is a real opportunity for everyone to give it a go. We’d rather see more families enjoying the sweet and juicy asparagus than throwing them out.

“The Odd Bunch range will include asparagus that might be a little bent from the weather but will still taste incredible.  Whether you grill it on the BBQ, throw it into a pasta dish, mix it into a stir-fry or eat it rolled up in bread, we don’t care, we just want you to enjoy asparagus fresh and in season.”

Countdown's Produce Manager, Grant Robinson said the addition of asparagus to the Odd Bunch Programme is a fantastic result for both the planet and customers.

"Our Odd Bunch Programme has been a great way to not only ensure we're sending as little food to waste as possible and reducing potential carbon emissions, but also means we can provide great value for our customers too. Despite looking a little less perfect, the LeaderBrand crop of Odd Bunch asparagus makes for delicious and cost-effective eating!"

Make sure you pick-up a bunch of The Odd Bunch LeaderBrand asparagus today from your local Countdown.