Joint media release: Farmers to reap benefits of recycled food and garden waste

28 September 2021

The Hon Sussan Ley MP, Minister for the Environment
The Hon Trevor Evans MP, Assistant Minister for Waste Reduction and Environmental Management


The Morrison Government has launched a $171 million bid to take 3.4 million tonnes of food and garden waste out of landfill each year, diverting it to farms to create healthier soils and a better environment.

Minister for the Environment Sussan Ley today released guidelines for the first national fund to recycle domestic and commercial organic waste.

“For years people have talked about paddock to plate, this is about plate to paddock. It is something that is already taking place, that we know it can help farms, but which needs to be scaled up to whole new level,” Minister Ley said.

“$57 million of Commonwealth investment to be matched by states and territories, and the private sector under the fund can generate 2,700 jobs in the organic recycling industry and remove two million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions from the atmosphere.”

Assistant Minister for Waste Reduction and Environmental Management Trevor Evans said organics represent Australia’s second largest waste stream after masonry.

“Australia’s soils are crucial to our prosperity and directly contribute $63 billion to the Australian economy through agriculture alone,” Minister Evans said.

“Nothing embodies a circular approach more than composting – returning today’s organic waste back to the soil to improve our food tomorrow.”

“A much stronger organics recycling industry will be one outcome, as will greater diversion from landfills, less food waste, better soil quality, and improved soil carbon capture.”

The Australian Organics Recycling Association (AORA) described the Morrison Government’s Healthy Soils Fund as a game changer for the industry.

“The Government’s support and hard work in lining up cross-governmental support nationally, will reap huge benefits,” AORA National Executive Officer Peter Olah said.

There will be two application rounds under the fund, the first closing on 17 December this year and the second closing on 31 March 2022. For further information, including contact details for interested industry partners: Food Waste for Healthy Soils Fund | Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment