Organic waste – including used tissues and paper napkins – goes in your green bin.
Organics are collected every week. Check your collection calendar.
We transform green bin items into soil for growing fruits, vegetables and flowers.
Using your green bin is easy
Lots of items besides food go in your green bin. These items are a sample of what to put in your green bin:
- paper napkins, paper towels
- loose shredded paper
- cotton balls
- greasy pizza boxes
- microwave popcorn bags
- corn stalks
- house plants (soil removed)
- food scraps
- fruit and vegetable peels
- bones, meat and fish
- coffee grounds and filters
Check How to Sort Your Waste to see if an item goes in your green bin.
Your kitchen container is a handy way to collect items for your green bin.
Line your kitchen container with certified compostable bags.
When choosing your compostable liner bag, look for one of these symbols:
You can also line your kitchen container with paper bags, newspaper, shredded paper or paper towel. To reduce moisture, put baking soda or shredded paper in the bottom of the container.
Empty the contents of your kitchen container into your green bin.
Your green bin holds 100L of organic waste. Green bins are one size only.
Green bin lock
Your green bin has a special lock. This lock stops animals and insects from opening the bin.
The lock works like the keys to your house. Turn it one way to lock it, and the other way to unlock it.
Always leave the lock in the vertical locked position. The contents of the bin will be collected with the lid locked.
Take the Peel challenge and reduce your food waste by the equivalent of a watermelon this year.
40% of the food we throw out is still good to eat.
These 3 simple tips can help the average Peel household cut food waste and save up to $112 per month:
1) Plan smart
- Before shopping, check what's already in your cupboards, fridge and freezer.
- Consider which meals you'll make at home and which you'll eat at restaurants.
- Plan to serve leftovers.
- Make a shopping list or check online for a food planning app.
- Use recipes to plan your meals and decide:
- The portion size. Check portion size guide
- The exact amount of food that you'll need.
2) Buy smart
- Don't shop hungry.
- Avoid buying items on impulse or on a whim.
- Check best before dates and other date labelling.
- Only buy "family size" packages or "buy one, get one free" items if you're sure you'll eat all the food.
- Shop more often for perishables, such as bananas.
- Buy smaller amounts of fresh foods that expire quickly; for example, buy 2 or 3 cobs of corn instead of a full sealed package.
- Buy loose rather than packaged food; for example, buy one avocado instead of a full bag.
3) Store smart
- Eat older food items first. (Tip: put an "eat first" sign on these items so you'll know you've had them longer.)
- Set your fridge to 4oC (or lower); set your freezer to -18oC (or lower).
- For refrigerated items, put ready-to-eat foods on the top shelf, left-over food to be reheated on the middle shelf and raw food on the bottom shelf.
- Store these items separately:
- Ripe/unripe food
- Put some items in the freezer:
- Divide large packages into smaller portions and freeze.
- Freeze extras such as bread, meat and leftovers. Divide leftovers into smaller portions.
- Freeze food up to 24 hours before its best before date.
- Write the date on the container for a food item before putting it into the freezer.
Shelf life and expiration
If you're not sure if you should eat or throw out a food:
- Check recommended refrigeration and freezing times.
- Check the date label:
The sell-by date is the last date a store is supposed to display the product for sale. If you buy a product past this date, be sure to eat it soon after purchase.
Best before date
The best before date tells you more about quality than safety. It indicates when an unopened product might start to lose its flavour, texture and nutritional value, not that it's unsafe to eat.
Don't eat any food past its expiration date. Check to see if the food is mouldy or has an odd odour, texture or colour.
Hard cheese (such as cheddar) is an exception: just cut an inch around the mould and eat the rest.
If a soft cheese (i.e., cottage cheese or cream cheese) has mould on it, throw it away. Toxins produced by the mould can spread throughout the cheese.
Always put food waste in your backyard composter or organics, never in your recycling or garbage.