Sign In

Sign in to view our member only content:

Aggregate & Quarry Association

Fact Files

Aggregates are the most consumed bulk product in the world after water.

Did you know?

  • New Zealand uses 9-10 tonnes of aggregate every year for each adult and child.
  • To build an average house, you need about 250 tonnes of aggregate - for use in concrete, asphalt, mortar and building products.
  • To build 1km of a two-lane motorway, you need around 14,000 tonnes of construction aggregates (400 truckloads).
  • Quarrying needs to be carried out close to where materials will be used. This keeps transportation costs low and helps to minimise building costs and emissions in local communities. Otherwise, it costs double for every 30km further away from its source.
  • The quarry industry is committed to working alongside local communities and follows stringent planning, environmental and operating conditions.
  • New Zealand needs to plan ahead and protect our aggregate supplies - so we can provide affordable houses for Kiwis and continue to build and repair our infrastructure.

Aggregates are fundamental to the lives of everyday New Zealanders. Without an on-going supply of aggregates, the production of concrete and the development of buildings, roads and infrastructure would come to a standstill.

Fact Files Aggregate Usage

The facts

In 2017, New Zealand produced an estimated 45 million tonnes of aggregates including limestone and other products. That's around 9-10 tonnes per capita - or the equivalent of nearly a truck load for every New Zealander every year. 

Over half of the aggregate produced in New Zealand is used on roads; a further fifth is used to construct commercial and residential building a half billion dollar industry – and more. The direct revenue earned from the 45 Mt of aggregates produced was $670M in 2017. The economic benefit of quarrying to our country (direct, indirect and induced) is $2.8 billion. Approximately 10,000 New Zealand jobs rely on aggregate.

Country/tonnes per person

New Zealand - 9.3t

United States - 7.5t

Australia - 7.0t

Europe - 5.2

Great Britain - 4.0t


Location and transport

For each tonne of aggregate produced, the first 30 kilometres it has to travel, doubles the overall cost. There are further costs for every extra kilometre – and these costs are passed on to consumers. That’s why it’s crucial that aggregates are sourced as close as possible to where they are needed.

About quarrying in New Zealand

Using Aggregate

Aggregates are the most consumed bulk product in the world after water. New Zealand uses 9-10 tonnes of aggregate every year for each adult and child.

Building NZ

To build an average house, you need about 250 tonnes of aggregate - for use in concrete, asphalt, mortar and building products.

Our Community

The quarry industry is committed to working alongside local communities and follows stringent planning, environmental and operating conditions.

Affiliated Organisations