Publish date: 10/06/2018

Continental Bakery in Rangiora and Coffee Culture in Rangiora and Kaiapoi are the latest venues to sign up to the Fresh Air Project, a new initiative to provide smokefree outdoor eating areas in cafes and restaurants.

The Fresh Air Project is a joint initiative between the Cancer Society and the Canterbury District Health Board and was first piloted in Christchurch for six months in late 2016 with 18 cafes making their outdoor eating areas smokefree. The pilot received overwhelming support from both businesses and customers. 

Martin Witt from the Cancer Society says that over 95% of the 1,861 customers who gave feedback on the pilot supported smokefree outdoor dining.

“The results show that customers love being able to enjoy their coffee or meal in a completely smokefree environment,” says Martin.  “So much so that nearly three-quarters said they were more likely to visit the venue again because their outdoor area was smokefree.”

A year and a half later, all 18 original participating businesses remain smokefree and none have reported detrimental impacts to their bottom line. 

For Continental Bakery in Rangiora, the choice to become fully smokefree was an easy one.  "I don't like the smell of smoke coming into the cafe," said Wendy Britton, Store Manager at Continental Bakery Rangiora.

They are part of a growing movement to provide smokefree eating areas with the number of Fresh Air Project venues in Canterbury swelling to 55.

Coffee Culture recently became the first nationwide franchise to join the movement, with patrons of all 19 franchises enjoying nothing but fresh air since the recent World Smokefree Day on May 31st.

If your hospitality venue is interested in providing a smokefree outdoor area to your customers head to www.freshairproject.org.nz  or contact the Cancer Society  03 379 5835.