From Food Waste to Food Recovery

In Australia we have most likely heard the term ‘Waste Hierarchy’ which focuses on the aspects ‘Avoid’, ‘Reuse’, Recycle’. While this is great as a guide for waste management practices when it comes to food waste I feel like it almost needs to be addressed separately and more specifically.

Food Waste or Food Recovery

The United States EPA outlines a ‘Food Recovery Hierarchy’ which I think is a very good representation of how we should be looking at food waste in Australia. Below is an infographic based on this:

food recovery hierarchy

Source Reduction:

Where possible avoid generating food waste. If you are in the hospitality business careful menu planning and ordering is crucial. Click here for some tips on how you can reduce food waste.

For some at food waste reduction tips at home click here.

Feed People In Need:

Food Rescue Charities collect excess food from businesses and redistribute it to charities that support vulnerable Australians. Some of the more prominent organisations in Melbourne are: SecondBiteOzHarvest, Foodbank and FareShare.

Soup kitchens and shelters such as the Sacred Heart Mission are also places you could contact if you have extra bulk food.

Feed Animals:

I have left this in the hierarchy as I believe it is worth mentioning but after undertaking some research I think there could be some legal implications with donating to farms etc in Australia for health and safety reasons. The Department of Agriculture and Food statesFeeding food scraps (also known as swill) to pigs is illegal in Australia because it could result in the introduction of devastating diseases to pigs and other animals.’

Composting and Renewable Energy:

For unavoidable food waste please contact us and we can help you set up a food waste recycling programme. KS Environmental will collect your food waste and transport it to a facility which uses an in vessel composting facility which produces a high quality compost which is used for broad acre agriculture and horticulture.


Disposal of food waste to landfill should be used as a last resort.

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