@leisure is a team of experienced leisure, aquatic and sports facility managers and planners, with market modelling, sports management, recreation planning, business and GIS qualifications. We have…read more
Café at Manurewa Pools and Leisure Centre focuses on healthy food choices
Manurewa Pools and Leisure Centre’s cafe is making a splash with its new approach to providing a wider range of good food and drink options for its customers.
Splashes Café owner Rob van der Berg says despite becoming well known for the cheap, large portions of chips they serve, he’s instituted to a number of changes, including reducing the size of his servings while removing a few of the old favourites – with surprisingly positive results.
van der Berg explained “we started the process in November when we cut some of the portion sizes and, to be honest, the feedback has been good.”
The new approach has been supported Healthy Families South Auckland, a New Zealand Ministry of Health-funded initiative being delivered by The Southern Initiative and The Cause Collective, and has been about ensuring customers have access to a wider range of good food and drink, in line with Auckland Council’s food and beverage bronze level guidelines.
This has included removing the vending machines, reducing the visibility of the hot chips and chicken nugget choices, reducing portion sizes of several menu items and ensuring water is the cheapest drink for an equivalent sized sweetened beverage.
Healthy Families South Auckland Manager George Makapatama says it is part of a wider piece of work the team, in collaboration with Manurewa Local Board and Auckland Council’s Parks, Sport and Recreation department, are undertaking to achieve a consistent approach across all aquatic, recreation and sport centres in South Auckland.
Makapatama advised “we want to see whanau live, work and play in thriving healthy communities and the council plays a key role in creating these environments in partnership with key stakeholders like this café.
“I want to pay particular tribute to the leadership of Manurewa Local Board and Parks, Sport and Recreation for their commitment to the local community to be part of the solution and championing this approach across our sites.”
Manurewa Local Board Chair Angela Dalton says the local board has made aquatic, recreation and sport centres a priority in terms of helping drive the change needed for Manurewa to become a healthier environment.
She advises “our community love using our leisure centres so it’s important we support them in their healthy pursuits by ensuring the food and beverages we serve in these facilities match these aspirations.”
Allan Paraha, the Aquatics Team Leader at Manurewa Pools and Leisure Centre says the café was particularly famous for its chips and so he’s impressed with Rob’s commitment to change things up.
He adds “I know one guy who drove up from Tauranga just for the chips.
“Our team have actually been doing a weight loss challenge, and I’ve lost 6kgs over the last ten weeks, so having the café taking this approach has definitely helped me and I’m sure it’s helping our customers too.”
With recent data showing that over 40% of children in the Manurewa and Papakura ward are overweight or obese, van der Berg believes one issue is the easy access to fast food, explaining “many of the kids coming here are overweight and I think it’s because there are takeaway shops everywhere. Back in Holland, where I’m originally from, there aren’t as many takeaway shops and that really helps.”
van der Berg and his wife Marlin have been running Splashes for 11 years, having previously run a bakery. He says they love the Manurewa community and how friendly people are, but it has been disheartening watching so many, particularly the young, struggling with their health.
Now he’s pleased to be part of the solution, rather than adding to the problem, concluding “it’s nice to do something that will help people.”
Images: Marlin and Rob van der Berg at the Splashes Café (top) and the Manurewa Pools and Leisure Centre (below).
12th April 2017 - Junk food constitutes majority of purchases from swimming pool kiosks
30th January 2017 - Auckland Council opens new Albany Stadium Pool
29th July 2016 - Sugary drinks dropped from Auckland Council leisure centres
10th May 2016 - New approach to gym and sport facility vending
3rd April 2016 - New Zealand wellness experts call for sugar tax
11th November 2015 - Darebin City Council healthy food options get YMCA backing
21st October 2015 - New Zealand plan to reduce childhood obesity
12th December 2013 - Auckland swim scheme reaches 60,000 children
Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?
The news we publish at www.ausleisure.com.au is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.
However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.
Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.
Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.
Click here to subscribe.
The Complete Guide to Leisure Industry Products & Services.
iEDM integrate Design, Engineering and Delivery Management services to convert existing spaces into exciting new entertainment venues. Our team consists of highly qualified professionals with diverse…read more
APT (Advanced Polymer Technology) is the leading global manufacturer of polyurethane-based materials, acrylic coatings and synthetic turf products for sporting and recreational applications. From…read more
Polin was founded in Istanbul in 1976, and has since grown into a leading company in the waterparks industry. Today Polin is one of the world leaders in the design, production, and installation of…read more
Intelligenz provides Leisure Management Software for managing all your Program Registrations, Facility Bookings, Membership Sales and POS Transactions; including detailed Reporting, automated…read more
Summit Fitness Equipment is now part of NovoFit - see www.ausleisure.com.au/suppliers/novofit/read more
Hadley Australia and Series Australia Pty Ltd are the leading quality theatre chair manufacturers in the southern hemisphere. The businesses work closely with architects, interior designers and…read more
Swimplex Aquatics are a world-class company dedicated to the commercial pool, waterslide industry. We are Australian market leaders servicing all states Australia wide. Swimplex provide a full…read more
get listed with our suppliers directory
Get your business noticed in our targeted directory. Viewed by 10,000 industry professionals per week!