The Australian Organics Recycling Industry – At a Glance
If Australia “gets organics recycling right”, we have a good chance of meeting our national and state objectives for waste reduction and recycling, landfill reduction, and carbon reduction. If we do not get it right, we will not achieve those targets and the successful transition to a circular economy, unlikely.
Australian Organics Recycling Association
The Australian Organics Recycling Association (AORA) is the peak industry body and national voice for businesses across the organics recycling supply chain. AORA envisions a future where recycling and reuse of organic materials within a circular economy is widely understood and supported by all Australians. AORA works to facilitate an operating environment which maximises the recycling and reuse of organic materials, and promotes the benefits of compost, soil conditioners and mulches across the Australian community and business.
Organics recycling is important for many reasons. Organics comprise about half of our national waste stream. If Australia “gets organics recycling right”, we have a good chance of meeting our national and state objectives for waste reduction and recycling, landfill reduction, and carbon reduction. If we do not get it right, we will not achieve those targets and the successful transition to a circular economy, unlikely.
The Australian Organics Recycling Industry
The Australian Organics Recycling Industry (AORI) in 2021-22 recycled 7.7 million tonnes of organic material. Across the decade AORI’s recycled tonnage has grown by 2.6 per cent each year and compares to Australia’s average population growth rate across the same time of 1.4 per cent.
Garden organics makes up the largest portion of organic materials recycled nationally comprising 41.6 per cent of materials followed by biosolids (18.8%), timber (13.7%) and food organics with 7.2 per cent.
Australia’s overall organic material recycling rate in 2021-22 was 52.3 per cent equating to 296 kilograms of recycled organic material for each person in Australia.
Direct Economic Benefit
AORI is an important contributor to the Australian economy. Results of a macro-economic analysis of the industry reveal the following:
- 314 businesses operating;
- Recycled and processed of 7.7 million tonnes of organic material in 2021-22;
- Providing 5,032 jobs to Australian residents;
- Pays over a $386 million in wages and salaries and an additional $40.5 million towards employee superannuation;
- Provides an average livelihood to each employee within the industry of $76,710 which compares to Australian average weekly earnings of $69,103;
- Has a collective industry turnover of over $2.1 billion;
- Sources and provides $1.9 billion in benefit across its supply chain;
- Invests $156 million in land, buildings, plant and equipment and vehicles each year; and
- Contributes $781 million in industry value add to the Australian economy.
Indirect Economic Benefit
AORI is estimated to contribute a further:
- $624 million in industry value add to GDP through flow-on demand for goods and services, including production induced and consumption induced effects;
- 4,227 indirect jobs provided through flow on activity.
The total estimated greenhouse gas savings from organics recycling in Australian in 2021-22 is approximately 3.9 million tonnes of CO2-e. These GHG savings are considered equivalent to:
- 8 million trees that would have to be planted to absorb the same amount of CO2;
- The greenhouse gas emissions that 902,311 cars would produce in a year.
For more information on the Australian Organics Recycling Industry (AORI), the Australian Organics Recycling Association (AORA) and to read the full AORA Vision 2031 Roadmap visit www.aora.org.au
Register free to visit the Australian Recycling Association (AORA) team on stand A27 at AWRE2023!