More people are using Rotorua's op shops as a dumping ground for their junk, one store manager says, with items such as dirty needles, soiled mattresses, filled nappies and a squashed, dead rat being left at store doors overnight.
Lisa Fraser, manager of The Salvation Army Family Store on Pukuatua St, said staff had to make at least three trips a week to the dump due to the high amount of rubbish being left at their doors.
"We get rubbish dumped at our store every day. Anything from dirty, soiled mattresses to household rubbish, ripped, smelly clothing and couches half eaten by rats.
"It is unfortunate for us because we are having to spend money on going to the dump instead of pouring it back into the community but we understand that there are two sides to every story and the likelihood is the people who dump their rubbish to us probably can't afford to take it to the dump."
Ms Fraser said while rubbish dumping was an ongoing issue, donations of clean, worthy items made the job worthwhile.
"We are so grateful for those who donate good, clean items we can resell to a family. For every item of junk we have to dispose of, we get equal amounts of good donations."
Rotorua Red Cross store manager Ken Weatherley said the issue of rubbish dumping was a growing problem around the city.
"I've been with the Red Cross for 18 years and our store has been open about four years. Over that time I've seen all manner of things being left at our doors.
"When we first opened it was pretty good, and even now we do get a lot of good stuff donated to us, but the amount of unusable items or rubbish being dropped off overnight is growing and becoming a real problem.
"We've had filled nappies, used sanitary pads, needles and condoms among bags of clothing which is really gross."
"Our volunteers have to sort through these items which is awful for them when they come across these kinds of items."
Savemart store manager Julie Porter said a lot of the stuff donated to them was sellable, but they also got their fair share of "yucky things".
"We get a lot of household rubbish like beer bottles and general trash. We see the amount increase over the Christmas and New Year's period, I guess because people are doing a spring clean, but it is a year-round problem."
Ms Porter said the most disgusting thing they found at their doorstep was a bag of bloody clothing.
"We also find a lot of spiders and once opened a bag of clothing that had a squashed, dead rat inside.
"I've only been working here for six months and I love my job but you do see some disgusting things."