Hannah Noble knows how to get by on a tight budget. The Christchurch-based mum-of-two is responsible for the Cheaper Living Facebook group, where more than 98,000 Kiwis share their tips for living frugally.

Witnessing food prices skyrocket over the last few months and more and more people looking for ways to eat healthily on a shoestring budget, Noble set out to create a resource to help all New Zealanders find affordable fruit and vegetables.

The Frugal Organized Mama, as she is known online, crowdsourced information about fruit and vege co-ops all across New Zealand and compiled them into a list she recently shared online.

These fruit and vegetable co-ops are places where people who buy produce in bulk then split them up to save money on them. Noble's list includes co-ops all across the country, from Northland to Otago.


"It's the perfect way to help lots of people live cheaper at once by having an easy to access resource," Noble told the Herald.

She found the details for the different co-ops by asking people directly or searching through Google and Facebook. The list is a constant work in progress as she hears of new places to get free or affordable fresh produce from.

"We specifically are looking for the lower cost co-ops that make fruit and veges affordable to nearly everyone rather than those that slightly reduce the cost of organic or more high cost foods and supplies," she explains.

According to Noble, there are thousands of people across New Zealand using vege co-ops as a way of getting cheaper, seasonal fruit and vegetables.

A quick search for fruit and vege co-ops within the Cheaper Living Facebook group reveals dozens of people looking for information on where to get affordable produce.

As an avid frugal shopper, she has used the co-ops in the past and plans to use them again in the future.

"You get a good variety of in-season fruit and veges. It can make it quicker, fresher, cheaper and I'm forced to use a variety if I typically stick to the same ones week and week out," she said.

"By joining one, it helps subsidise it for everyone, so it helps make it more affordable for those who rely on it to feed their children fruit and veges as well."