- A weekly recycling service for Food Organics and Garden Organics (FOGO) is planned to commence in May 2020, for residents that use our kerbside waste collection services.
- From May 2020, food waste and garden waste will be able to be placed in the same bin. There are no changes to your green waste collection service until this date.
- The service could divert up to 19,000 tonnes of waste from landfill each year.
- We will provide residents with a small plastic caddy and a roll of compostable bags for collecting food waste in their kitchens.
- FOGO material will be processed into soil conditioning products for use in agriculture and horticulture (e.g. to grow food).
- On average, the waste charge is expected to increase by 16.3% in the first year to enable the delivery of the service, then decrease in the following year.
From May 2020 we will commence a weekly Food Organics and Garden Organics (FOGO) recycling service. From this date, residents can put garden waste and all food waste in their green waste bin.
At this time, the green waste bin will be renamed as the FOGO bin.
Currently, Boroondara rubbish bins contain 46% food and garden waste. This is sent to landfill, which creates harmful greenhouse gases. As a key action in our Waste Minimisation and Recycling Strategy, we’ve committed to removing food waste from landfill.
By diverting food waste to the FOGO collection, we could reduce our landfill waste by up to 19,000 tonnes per year and avoid thousands of tonnes of harmful greenhouse gas emissions.
Can I start putting food waste in my green waste bin?
No, please do not start adding food waste to your green waste bin until the new service commences. If you do this now, it will contaminate your green waste bin and will result in the entire load being landfilled. FOGO collections are planned to start in May 2020.
Until then, there are other ways to dispose of food waste including composting, using a worm farm or a Bokashi bucket. See our Order a compost bin page for details.
Foods you can recycle as part of FOGO
FOGO provides a solution for collecting all cooked and uncooked food waste, even items that aren’t ideal in a worm farm or home compost.
It covers all food waste including fish, meat, bones, bread, dairy and hard-to-compost items such as onion, chilli, citrus peel and garlic.
Collecting food waste in your kitchen
We will provide every resident with a FOGO bench-top kitchen caddy (a small plastic tub with a lid) and a roll of approved caddy-liner compostable bags. When the bag is full, simply tie in a knot and put it in your FOGO bin. Research has shown that residents that use caddies and liners have the highest diversion rates of food waste from landfill.
Once the service commences, FOGO bins will be collected weekly. This will increase the waste service provision by an average of approximately 60 litres per week per household.
A weekly collection ensures the highest diversion rate of food waste from landfill. It also means that most of the items that currently cause any unpleasant odours in rubbish bins will still be collected weekly, just as they are now, but in your FOGO bin instead of in your household waste bin.
Processing FOGO waste
The contents will be taken to a commercial in-vessel composting facility. Similar to ‘hot composting’ but on a much bigger scale, in-vessel is a great technology for processing food and garden waste quickly and safely, without causing odours.
It also emits fewer greenhouse gases compared to food waste in landfill and produces Australian Standard soil conditioning products like soil enhancers, which will then be sold for agricultural and horticultural use.
Due to the one-off implementation costs, the waste charge will increase for 1 year by 16.3% per household (inclusive of the increasing Victorian Government landfill levy) to enable us to deliver the new service. We anticipate that the waste charge will then reduce in the year after this service is implemented.
Other FOGO initiatives
FOGO collections have been rolled out here in Victoria and in many countries around the world. The United Kingdom piloted in-vessel technology and a food waste collection service in 2004 and in Milan, Italy, all 1.4 million residents enjoy a food waste collection service. Approximately 25% of councils in Victoria are now trialling or providing a FOGO service for their residents.
The Victorian councils who already successfully collect all cooked and uncooked food waste via a weekly FOGO collections are: Bass Coast, Benalla, Nillumbik and Albury-Wodonga. There are a number of other councils in metropolitan Melbourne that are currently introducing a FOGO collection service, including Bayside and Moreland.
Stay informed about FOGO
Updates and information will be released regularly on our website, in the Boroondara Bulletin, on the Boroondara Council Facebook page and also through more localised communications. When we deliver the caddies, liners and bins (if needed) to homes, all the information you need will be supplied in a handy FOGO Information Pack for you to keep.