Precinct food waste trial

Deakin University is aiming to feed hungry conference attendees whilst minimising food waste.

With food and garden organic material making up 60% of landfill waste, Cleantech Innovations Geelong facilitated a project between Deakin University and CSIRO to develop technologies process their food waste on the Waurn Ponds campus.

Deakin University installed a Closed Loop food composter, built by Australian business Closed Loop Recycling, at their Waurn Ponds Estate. The unit takes a wide variety of food waste (everything but large bones, mollusc shells and cooking oils) and converts up to 60 kilograms per day into nutrient-rich soil improver; reducing the original waste volume by 90%.

To discover how Deakin University are reducing food waste going to landfill while returning organic goodness back into their kitchen garden, look for the Organic Waste Education article online.

Closely resembling coffee grounds, the end product is easy to store and nutrient-rich, and allows kitchen staff to fertilise the kitchen garden that supplies the restaurant with fresh produce.

The unit also prevents otherwise-rotting food waste from producing pest-attracting odours, and methane emissions; 25 times more potent than the carbon pollution emitted from a car exhaust.

Support for the trial

This project followed on from an investigation conducted by Sustainability Victoria - "Commercial & Industrial organics processing outline business case - Pigdon's Road organic precinct", published in 2014.

In 2015 Cleantech Innovations Geelong commenced a project to facilitate a further investigation of suitable food waste processing technologies.

Site visits were conducted, to where a short listed number of technologies were in use, and the trial of one technology has provided Deakin University and CSIRO with enough information to assess how fit for purpose the unit will be for the Waurn Ponds Estate.

This trial enabled Deakin University to identify the costs and benefits of installing a food waste processing unit, which they now use on an ongoing basis. More Deakin University campuses are now considering the installation of food waste processing systems.

Cleantech Innovations Geelong is a business and industry support program to develop markets for clean technologies (cleantech). Our vision is to establish Geelong as a Centre of Excellence for cleantech in Australia, by attracting investment, creating jobs and building skills.

Clean Technology (cleantech) is defined by Australian CleanTech as: economically viable products, services and processes that harness renewable materials and energy sources, dramatically reduce the use of natural resources and cut or eliminate emissions and wastes.

The business support program has been operating since 2014, delivering positive economic growth and sustainability outcomes for Greater Geelong.

The program is a partnership funded through the Victorian State Government, the Geelong Manufacturing Council and the City of Greater Geelong. The program is in line with Geelong’s designation as a UNESCO City of Design and the community-led 30 year vision for a clever and creative future.

Support for your business

Our team provides hands-on business support to help you:

  • Access grants for new, collaborative projects that stimulate the market for clean technologies
  • Deliver activities to develop your skills and capabilities around clean technologies
  • Create innovative cleantech products through procurement
  • Explore opportunities to grow your market for cleantech products or services
  • Share your success stories and learn from others through industry briefings.

Our key activities during 2018-2021 were:

  • Bringing new cleantech products to market by stimulating demand and providing grants
  • Inviting proposals for large-scale cleantech demonstration project(s)
  • Exploring the creation of a cleantech precinct.

Page last updated: Monday, 29 May 2023