What does FOGO mean?

    FOGO stands for ‘Food Organics and Garden Organics’ and is the green-lid bin at home. Anything that grows (or once grew) belongs in the green-lid FOGO bin, mostly importantly FOOD!  This includes all food waste (including meat, fish, bones, dairy/eggs, fruit, vegetables, and bread), soiled paper products (shredded paper, paper towel, tissues, and pizza boxes), Australian certified compostable packaging, and all garden organics (e.g. grass clippings). Material placed in the green-lid FOGO bin is collected by East Waste and taken to a Jeffries Soils (a commercial composting facility) where it is turned into compost. 

    What foods can I put in the FOGO bin?

    All food scraps are good to FOGO: 

    • All fruits and vegetables including citrus 
    • Meat and Bones 
    • Dairy 
    • Seafood 
    • Egg shells 
    • Teabags, tea leaves and coffee grounds
    • Breads and cake
    • Cooked and processed food
    • Rice and pasta

    Remember ‘if it grows, it goes!”

    You can also include:

    • Tissues 
    • Paper towel and serviettes
    • Hair, including pet hair
    • Pizza boxes 
    • Shredded paper 
    • Straw/hay
    • Pet poo
    • Australian-certified compostable food packaging
    • Paper/cardboard food packaging (without a plastic liner)
    • Bamboo or bagasse food packaging
    • Bamboo and wooden cutlery


    Only Australian-certified compostable bags can be used in the green bin/FOGO bin. Biodegradable bags should NOT be used in the FOGO bins as these disintegrate into micro-plastics.

    Why trial?

    The intent of the trial is identify and assess a wide range of matters including community acceptance, logistical matters, environmental outcomes and economic value, while ultimately testing and refining the design of the best collection system for the Adelaide Hills Council. 

    Providing expanded and increased FOGO services (green-lid bin) and a fortnightly landfill (blue-lid bin) service will actively encourage the community to place more food waste in their FOGO bin (where it belongs). 

    The Adelaide Hills Council and East Waste encourage all households and residents to ‘Give weekly FOGO a GoGo!’ before deciding if the new system is right for them.  We appreciate it is significant change, but also believe that it can have a number of benefits if implemented.

    What are the benefits of expanding and increasing FOGO bin collections?

    • Delivers a more equitable, convenient, and environmentally sustainable waste and recycling service.
    • Supports Adelaide Hills Council’s Strategic Plan objectives to ‘Reduce the impact  of waste to landfill by maintaining a robust waste and resource management framework.’ and ‘Assist our community to reduce the impact of waste   to landfill on the environment’ to be achieved by;
      1. ‘Implementing new or improved waste service opportunities whilst continuing to provide ongoing resource recovery and waste service to our community’ 
      2. ‘We will explore more Green Organics options to achieve improved environmental and financial outcomes’
    • Supports East Waste 2030 strategic targets of 75% kerbside diversion with 100% food waste diversion.
    • Provides residents with greater disposal capacity            
      1. Gives residents in township areas 13% more bin capacity each fortnight (860 litres vs 760 litres).
      2. Gives residents in rural areas 19% more bin capacity for a fortnightly FOGO collection service (620 litres vs 520 litres) and a 65% increase for a weekly FOGO collection service (860 litres vs 520 litres).
    • Better aligns bin collections with the waste streams generated by the Adelaide Hills Council community.
    • Reduces bushfire risk through providing a more convenient disposal of excess garden organics.
    • Reduces landfill volumes and associated greenhouse gas emissions.
    • Increases recycling of food waste via green FOGO bins. These materials are sent for composting through Jeffries’ local composting facility and used by local farms and gardens to increase the return of nutrients to the soil and reduce irrigation needs. 
    • Supports local jobs within the waste and recycling sector. 

    What do households need to be part of the trial?

    Nothing yet, trial areas will be decided by Council. 

    Will weekly green/FOGO and fortnightly waste/landfill cost more?

    In terms of cost, sending waste to landfill is over three times more expensive than the cost of processing organics into compost. By placing your food waste into the FOGO bin, landfill volumes and associated spending on the SA Waste Levy and landfill fees are reduced.  The environmental benefits of weekly FOGO can be achieved at no additional cost to the community and over the long term this should be a more cost-effective model.

    Will the additional truck for weekly FOGO lead to more greenhouse gas emissions?

    When organic matter breaks down in landfill it creates methane, a greenhouse gas that is 25 times more potent than carbon dioxide. The emissions associated with an additional bin truck are insignificant compared to the methane emissions saving made from the switch to weekly FOGO. A truck filled with 25 tonnes of Food and Garden Organics (FOGO) can be driven 15,444km to a composting facility before it emits the same amount of greenhouse gases as that same truckload put into landfill.

    Did you know food waste makes up 30-40% of what goes into blue bins in the hills?

    When food and garden organic waste is sent to landfill it rots and releases methane, a harmful greenhouse gas with 25 times the global warming potential of carbon dioxide. At the Adelaide Hills Council we are committed to reducing waste that goes into blue bins and we need your help do to that. Recovered food and garden organic waste can be turned into valuable nutrient rich products (compost and mulch) which help increase soil quality and water retention. Diverting these items from landfill also creates jobs and reduces disposal costs.

    What's the trial all about?

    It's a 12 month green organics bin and collection trial across three locations in Woodside and Lenswood that involves properties that did not have a FOGO bin receiving one and changes to the collection of the FOGO and landfill bin. The aim of the bin collection change is to substantially improve environmental performance by decreasing the amount of waste that goes to landfill.

    What is the benefit of reduced FOGO to landfill?

    • Reducing landfill greenhouse gas emissions
    • Assisting in growing the circular economy through the processing and return of nutrient-rich compost back to our South Australian soil
    • Creating more compost for growing our food
    • Potential cost savings by diverting waste from landfill
    • Reducing smell from the green FOGO bins, by collecting food and garden organics on a weekly basis
    • Increasing food recycling rates
    • Providing more bin capacity each fortnight.

    How do I know if I am in the trial?

    We will let you property owners know via a letter sent the week of the 11 September and the delivery of a welcome pack to each residential property during the week of the 18 September.

    What's does Council offer now to encourage recycling of food waste?

    Adelaide Hills Council offers its residents a number of options to encourage and enable recycling of food and garden organic waste.

    • Food and garden organics bins (FOGO bins) are collected kerbside fortnightly from households in township areas (~10,500 households) and sent to a compost facility.
    • Free green organic drop off days are held throughout the year (~25 days per year) across three sites.
    • Residents without FOGO kerbside bins, (predominantly outside of township boundary areas), are still eligible to receive two vouchers per financial year to dispose of organics at the Heathfield Resource Recovery Centre.