The NSW Government has recently announced that all Councils in NSW are required to transition to Food Organics and Garden Organics (FOGO) waste systems.
While here in the Port Macquarie-Hastings region we have been accepting FOGO through our Kitchen Food Bin systems for some time, this does mean that there are changes to what can and can’t go in our kitchen food bins and green bins to meet the state-wide standard.
The NSW Environment Protection Agency (EPA) has issued advice on acceptable inputs into FOGO bins to ensure a uniform approach. The state-wide changes look to limit contamination and help to maintain the quality of compost produced from organic waste.
Your FOGO bin continues to be used for all food scraps, garden clippings, and grass clippings. Where we had in the past accepted some other items, these are no longer acceptable to place in our FOGO bin. Items no longer accepted in the kitchen food bin and green bin include soiled pizza boxes, tea bags, tissues, paper towel, shredded paper, and coffee filters are not allowed. These items must now go into your red bin. To help you keep your bin tidy and capture more organic waste, you can wrap food scraps in council-issued cornstarch bags, paper, or newspaper.
Council is currently updating relevant materials and resources to reflect these changes to share with the community. You can read more about the FOGO changes and check out the Frequently Asked Question (FAQ’s) on our website. You can also download the Port Macquarie Hastings Waste Info App which is a great tool to look up what goes in which bin. The app has an array of useful features including:
- Personalised bin collection calendar, with optional reminders
- Quick guide to your three bin system and your kitchen bin
- An itemised A-Z guide of what goes in which bin
- Forms to report litter, damaged or stolen bins, missed bin collections, reorder food bin bags, and request clothing collections through Willing & Able
- Information about our waste services and facilities, including contact details, opening times and maps
- ‘Report an issue’ form allowing you to send us feedback
- Access to all available waste information, hints and tips to help with waste management
- Optional notifications to ensure your app is up to date with the latest waste information.