Organic Recycling

Diverting food and compostable packaging from landfill helps reduce pollution and allows essential nutrients to be returned to the soil.

A photo of an organic poster

Organic bins are located in kitchens and common areas for the recycling of food waste and compostable packaging like cardboard food trays, bio-plastic containers, corn-starch cutlery and paper straws.

All food packaging from campus eateries is 100% compostable, which means it has been certified to break down completely into non-toxic components within 180 days in a commercial composting facility.

What you can do

  • Read the bins signs and recycle correctly.
  • Put all food waste in a green organics bin.
  • If you don't know if food packaging is compostable, throw it in the landfill bin.
  • Only buy what you need. Plan your meals and shop with a list.
  • Store food correctly to make it last longer.
  • Cook with what you have. Use ingredients up and love your leftovers.
  • Order an appropriate sized meal if eating out to reduce food waste.

To order bins for an event or clean-out, go to the Infrastructure website and Request a Service (waste). 60L, 240L and 660L sizes are available.

Food waste facts

In Australia every year:

  • Five million tonnes of food ends up in landfill.
  • One in five shopping bags of food are thrown away.
  • Nearly four million people go hungry.
  • Food waste costs the economy around $20 billion.

Unless regularly turned over, food breaks down slowly due to a lack of oxygen. This creates methane, a gas that is 20 times more potent than carbon dioxide. Around 90% of emissions from landfills are from decomposing organic material which could be diverted and composted.

OzHarvest Food Rescue

OzHarvest collects quality excess food from commercial outlets and delivers it to more than 1,300 charities that support disadvantaged people including those who are experiencing homelessness.

Between 2011 and 2018, surplus food from the University was collected and redistributed by OzHarvest. Over this time, the University donated the equivalent of 60,200 meals. Diverting this food from landfill helped save more than 32,000 kg CO2-eq greenhouse gases and around 2,900,000 liters of water.

Over time, on-campus retailers have improved stock control and ordering processes. Now, there's so little left-over food that a regular OzHarvest collection is not required.