Ag plastics recycling pilot launched in north-west Victoria

A pilot program to improve the collection and recycling of agricultural plastics has begun in Victoria’s Lodden Mallee region.

Collection sites at the Mildura Rural City Council landfill, the Swan Hill Rural City Council landfill, and North West Ag Services in Ouyen are accepting table grape covers and irrigation tubes from horticulture and grain silo bags from broadacre cropping.

The scheme is an initiative under the Federal Government’s National Product Stewardship Investment Fund, led by agricultural consultancy firm RM Consulting Group (RMCG) and Queensland’s horticulture industry body, Growcom.

RMCH Principal Dr Anne-maree Boland said plastic waste is a huge problem for Australian primary producers and councils.

“As there are limited options for recycling this type of waste, it is often disposed of in harmful ways that can pollute our environment,” she said.

“We know industry want to do the right thing and this pilot provides an opportunity to work with industry leaders, collect end-of-life agricultural plastics and turn these products back into new ones to help farmers reduce waste and save money,” Dr Boland said.

It’s expected that the scheme will be broadened from October to include other used agricultural plastics in Victoria’s northwest.