Story: Māori foods – kai Māori

Kūmara storage pits, 1930 (1st of 2)

Kūmara storage pits, 1930

These three rua kūmara (kūmara storage pits) were still in use when this photo was taken in 1930. They were dug into the side of earth banks at Ruatāhuna, Urewera, with wooden doorways and reinforcing added. When placing kūmara in the pit, great care was taken not break the skins, to avoid decay. The rua kūmara then preserved the crop, and offered protection against pests and thieves.

Using this item

Alexander Turnbull Library, Albert Percy Godber Collection (PA-Group-00048)
Reference: G-1682-1/2-APG
Photograph by Albert Percy Godber

Permission of the Alexander Turnbull Library, National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa, must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

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How to cite this page:

Charles Royal and Jenny Kaka-Scott, 'Māori foods – kai Māori - Traditional cooking and preserving', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/en/photograph/40255/kumara-storage-pits-1930 (accessed 16 September 2019)

Story by Charles Royal and Jenny Kaka-Scott, published 5 Sep 2013