Bin Inspection Program

As part of Council’s community waste education program, we conduct visual inspections of mixed recycling and FOGO bins. Visual inspections of bins allows Council to provide households with feedback on their waste disposal behaviours and gather contamination data for targeted education campaigns.

Check your recycling knowledge

What can go in the mixed recycling bin changes and is different between Council areas. It’s always good to check and keep up to date with the latest information on what can go in your bins.

Find out more about what can go in your:

More about the bin inspection process

What is contamination?

Contamination means there’s something in the bin that doesn’t belong there.

When the wrong thing is placed in the bin it has a big impact on our collection and recycling process. Incorrect materials can damage trucks and machinery, endanger drivers and workers at the Material Recovery Facility and increases the cost to provide the service to our community.

What are the contamination rates in Maroondah?

Mixed recycling bin contamination 

Maroondah has an average contamination rate in our mixed recycling bins of 13 per cent which is 2.5 per cent higher than the state average of 10.5 per cent (Sustainability Victoria, August 2020).

Contamination of recycling leads to greater costs for Material Recovery Facilities (MRFs) when sorting our recycling into different materials. This reduces their efficiency, contaminates other materials which could have been recycled, and in some cases, endangers workers and breaks machines resulting in MRFs having to close temporarily so machinery can be repaired. 

The main items that go into mixed recycling bins that shouldn’t be there are plastic bags and other soft plastics, paper towel, tissues and containers with food or liquid in them.

Food organics garden organics bin (FOGO) contamination 

Maroondah has an average contamination rate in our FOGO bins of 4 per cent which is 1 per cent greater than the average metropolitan Melbourne Council. 

The main item that goes into the FOGO bin which shouldn’t is ‘oversized’ materials such as branches longer than 40cm in length and logs which are greater than 10 cm in diameter. 

Large items break our trucks and they take too long to turn into compost, even when using industrial composting technologies.

Other items that are incorrectly going into the FOGO bin are loose soil, rocks, treated wood, animal faeces, bagged garden waste, textiles and recyclable packaging. 

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