Waste & Resource Recovery

Food waste initiative up for three awards

Food waste initiative up for three awards

Sustainability Victoria (SV) has announced the finalists of this year’s Premier’s Sustainability Awards and amongst them is a marketplace built to reduce food waste.

The awards, now in its 16th year, continue to grow and reflect the action that is happening across regional and metropolitan Victoria and SV said it received more entries than ever before across the 10 categories in this year’s awards.

Yume Food could be a big winner in 2018, being a finalist in three categories – Environmental Protection, Innovative Products or Services, and Small and Medium Enterprises.

The company has built a marketplace exclusively for surplus food in an attempt to reduce food waste.

Established in 2014 to mitigate the amount of food that’s wasted in the commercial food sector, Yume’s mission is to create a world without waste by facilitating the sale and donation of quality surplus food that may have otherwise been discarded.

Operating as an online marketplace, Yume solves the problem for suppliers who often have surplus food due to cancelled orders or lack of storage space by allowing them to list surplus food products on the Yume platform to reach a large and growing network of potential buyers.

The Department of Justice and Regulation is also a finalist in the Government category for its Recycle, Reuse, Donate Woodwork Program

The program was established as an environmentally sustainable project that contributes to waste avoidance, while teaching offenders valuable new skills and creating an avenue for them to give back to the local community.

Since 2015, the program has created more than 135 items from discarded pallets, sourced from partners, to produce items of furniture such as benches, tables and chairs that are then donated to community organisations.

In conjunction with existing programs within the state’s prisons, male and female offenders are learning valuable carpentry and cabinet-making skills while improving sustainability and reducing wasted pallets going to landfill.

Also in the running is Revolution Apps in the Small and Medium Enterprises category for Compost Revolution.

Compost Revolution is an online community education and logistics platform designed to scale household organics recovery.
It provides residents with composting, worm farming and bokashi fermentation skills and access to subsidised equipment, delivering products to their door on behalf of councils.

The platform helps councils meet landfill reduction targets and divert money that would have been spent on tip fees, haulage and other costs, into organics recovery infrastructure. This delivers long-term cost savings and other benefits, while building more resilient communities and generating a more positive profile for councils.

In the Community category, Kensington Compost is amongst the finalist for an initiative that commenced in in 2016 after a resident posted on a community Facebook page asking where they could dispose kitchen scraps to prevent them going to landfill.

Kensington Compost was born and 15 drop-off points which include compost bins, worm farms and a place to bury bokashi bins were soon established, all maintained by volunteers.

The number of residents using this service increases weekly. In 2017, Kensington Compost had more than 150 households who regularly use the communal drop-off points and composted over 18 tonnes of food waste.

The full list of finalists can be found here.

The Premier’s Sustainability Awards ceremony will be held in Melbourne on Thursday, October 11.

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