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Tuesday, June 15, 2021

City brings compost revolution to family home

Newcastle households are being given the opportunity to take up home composting and reduce the amount of food waste going to landfill.

Residents will be offered a 75% discount off the recommended retail price, as well as free shipping of selected composting, worm farming and bokashi fermenting products.

Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes said the program would be available to the public from Saturday 5 June, which coincides with World Environment Day.

“This year’s theme is ecosystem restoration, focussing on resetting our relationship with nature,” she explained.

“And, home composting is a great way to do this.

“In Newcastle, about 30% of the waste in our red-lidded bins is organic and food waste.

“Per household, we throw away an average of 135kg of food waste each year and home composting is one way we can combat this.

“Composting and worm farming are both fantastic ways to recycle scraps from the kitchen while providing a rich fertiliser for the garden.

“Households with no garden, or limited space, can still get involved by choosing the compact bokashi bin, which ferments a large range of food scraps including meat, citrus and dairy, so there’s a way for everyone in the community to get involved.”

Cr Nelmes said an important impact of this program would be less food waste to landfill.

“A recent survey of more than 500 Newcastle residents found 98% felt it was important to divert waste from landfill,” she stated.

“To support this program, Newcastle Libraries will be hosting a four-part podcast series and short video series, which will help provide residents with knowledge and skills for successful home composting.” 

Newcastle LGA (local government area) residents will be able to purchase a home composting system from the Compost Revolution website at the subsidised price and it will be delivered to their door free of charge.

Before making their purchase, residents will need to complete a simple training program either online or in person to ensure they choose the right home composting program for their household and learn how to compost successfully. 

The discounted products available are:

  • Dirt Vader compost bin plus compost revolver;
  • The Farm worm farm plus 1,000 worms; and
  • Urban Composter bokashi bin + 1L enzyme refill + scrap smasher.

“Composting, worm farming, and bokashi fermentation are positively exploding as more people discover how easy it is to make a big difference for the environment while creating their own soil and fertiliser at home,” Compost Revolution CEO David Gravina said.

“It is something all of us can do to turn a problem into a valuable resource while doing our bit for the planet.”

This initiative is part of a broader organics recycling plan for the City of Newcastle, which includes the construction of a commercial grade organics recycling facility at Summerhill Waste Management Centre.

Once the facility is commissioned, it will allow food waste to be collected with vegetation in the organics bins.

Ultimately, this new facility will produce a quality compost product from kerbside organics, which can be used as a replacement for inorganic fertilisers.

The home composting program will be launched on 5 June, with products available to purchase online.

Product numbers are limited and will be on a first-come, first-served basis. 

For further information, visit www.newcastle.nsw.gov.au/living/waste-and-recycling/food-waste

This project is an NSW Environment Protection Authority Waste Less, Recycle More initiative, which is part funded from the waste levy. 

Face-to-face home composting workshops 

  • Monday 28 June: 10am – 12pm at Stockton Senior Citizen Hall 
  • Saturday 10 July: 2pm – 4pm at Hamilton South Estate Centre Care Hall 
  • Monday 6 September: 2pm – 4pm at Hunter Multicultural Communities Waratah 
  • Saturday 16 October: 2pm – 4pm at Wallsend Library

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