New funding to build capacity for Victoria’s organics reprocessing sector

Published: 23 October 2021

Sustainability Victoria has announced a $10.2 million fund to divert more organic waste from landfill, reduce contamination and improve the quality of recovered organic material to help grow the food of tomorrow and secure Australia’s agricultural future.

Now open to organic processing businesses, the first round of Recycling Victoria Organics Sector Transformation Fund focuses on investment to build new or enhance existing organics processing capacity, improving capability to remove contamination and produce a higher quality product.

Organics, such as food waste and garden waste, are important resources that can’t be utilised if they are sent to landfill.

The Victorian recycling organics industry is experiencing rapid growth. Through kerbside reform and improved recovery of commercial and industrial waste, there is an increasing supply of organic waste and a need to use this waste productively.

This funding presents an opportunity to address the increasing supply and improve the way we use recycled organics in products such as compost, soil conditioners, soil blends and mulches by removing contamination.

It will assist to:

  • increase the recovery and reprocessing of source separated organic waste into quality composts and soil conditioners
  • increase the use and market demand of organic products, especially for use in agricultural soils
  • support employment and long-term economic growth and development
  • support Victoria’s transition to a circular economy.

The Victorian organics market

SV has listened to the recycling organics industry and understands that managing contamination risks is critical if markets are to be maintained and absorb the increased recovery of organic waste expected to arise from Recycling Victoria reforms.

Over the next decade, Victoria will cut waste generation by 15 per cent per capita and halve food and other organic waste being sent to landfill under the state’s Recycling Victoria action plan.

As the sector faces increased supply of household and commercial organics, it needs to diversify and expand to overcome the potential shortfall in processing capacity.

This funding presents the industry with the opportunity to explore more sophisticated infrastructure to increase processing capacity and enhance decontamination capability in order to generate higher long-term revenue.

Supporting the recycling organics industry divert more waste from landfill will reduce greenhouse gasses, improve soil health generating more nutritious food and keep Victoria on the path towards a circular economy.

Understanding the funding

The funding is being delivered as part of the Victorian Government’s $515 million investment to transform the waste and recycling sector, including $380 million towards Recycling Victoria, helping to position Victoria as the national leader in recycling.

Projects selected by Sustainability Victoria will be submitted to the Australian Government for consideration under the national Food Waste for Healthy Soils Fund.

The Australian Government’s fund aims to support the diversion of nutrient-rich household and commercial organic waste from landfill to soils, with a $57 million investment to build new or enhance existing organic waste processing infrastructure to improve product quality or increase capacity.

For more information and to apply, see the grant guidelines.