“Ever wanted to know if a cow is smiling? Or how you can make your car run on food waste from the rubbish dump?”
Well Grow Ō Tautahi Science Ambassador Trevor Stuthridge is keen to share cool science along with research that makes a real difference to people’s lives.
“I think scientists often forget how amazing our job is and how excited our research can make people,” the AgResearch Research Director says.
Trevor is leading the Science of Food Hub during Christchurch’s free, three-day Garden Festival Grow Ō Tautahi.
Challenged by the ideas and questions of local secondary students, environmental experts from AgResearch, Lincoln University and Environment Canterbury will explore the topics that matter to our region right now and into the future.
“It is a great chance to make science real by engaging audiences in environmental and sustainability issues that really mean something to their lives,” he says.
A self-professed “uber geek”, Trevor is thrilled to have the opportunity to share cutting-edge science at the festival and demonstrate how local research can have a real benefit to our personal and community wellbeing.
“We’re all becoming more aware that what we consume has a direct impact on both our health and our environment. A future where we tailor food to our individual genetics and track its source according to consumer preferences is now on the horizon.
“Indeed, local research organisations and universities view the region as a strong, living laboratory for how science can make a difference for New Zealand.”
Five garden designers, nine local schools, a collaboration of 32 community gardens and a range of top chefs, scientists, garden experts and sponsors are already signed-up and excitement is growing ahead of Christchurch’s new homegrown garden festival.
For three days in March 2020, the Christchurch Botanic Gardens will play host to the most innovative, exciting new garden festival on the horticultural calendar – Grow Ō Tautahi. A homegrown garden festival designed specifically for the Garden City, Grow Ō Tautahi is a free community event that draws on the best ideas from the local community, schools, garden designers, scientists, food gatherers and top chefs.
Festival Director Sandi MacRae says Grow Ō Tautahi is much more than a flower show – it’s a local event based on the participation of Christchurch people in a variety of activities, displays and entertainment that will appeal to visitors of all ages.
“We’ve got fantastic partners who bring creativity and innovation to the festival – presenting partner Lincoln University will lead discussions on science and sustainability, while our Ambassadors, celebrity chef Jax Hamilton, interior designer Julia Atkinson-Dunn, award-winning garden designer Dan Rutherford and Ag Research scientist Dr Trevor Stuthridge, will all share their specialist knowledge.
“Visitors will be able to sample locally sourced food prepared by celebrity chefs, explore cutting edge landscape design displays, participate in workshops and masterclasses, learn about food science, experience gardening through the eyes of local school children and generally revel in all that’s new, sustainable, innovative and fun in gardening and food sourcing.”