Nearly every developed country wastes huge amounts of food – i.e. the ABC even reports that Australia wastes c.40% of the food that it produces. This is from many reasons – such as supermarkets etc throwing away unsold food – to households throwing out uneaten food.  In today’s blog we will look at the potential for creating animal feed from food waste process.


The problem is huge – and vast amounts of perfectly fine food is simply thrown away – “If we look at the potato industry, 40 per cent of the produce is thrown out, which is mostly because of cosmetic standards,” Dr Lapidge said.



Whilst lots of food such as fruit and veg is provided to farms as animal stockfeed – is there potential to expand these programmes – and prevent food waste from ending up in landfill. See our blog on green waste recycling for leaves, grass clippings etc.


We have covered other aspects of food waste in our blogs on biogas and energy generation.


A bit about Waster


Waster provides low cost waste and recycling solutions to small and medium Aussie companies. We provide every type of recycling, general waste and grease trap cleaning on flexible 30 day agreements – so you never need to worry about hidden charges or rollover clauses again.



Animal Feed From Food Waste Process – The current situation


Waster currently works with a number of food production businesses to provide the waste food to stockfeed operations  i.e. animal fodder.


Check out our article on whether use by food really can be eaten!


This is for clean vegetables etc – i.e. no meat or animal products involved.


The benefits of this type of operation are pretty clear. Farmers obtain food for animals – much lower cost than alternatives methods – and the food production business saves lots of money on organic waste services – or even general waste.


The food is healthy and suitable for animal feeding.


Is there potential for expansion of these programmes – Turning Food Waste Into Animal Feed


There are lots of moves to increase food provision for animal swill. Woolworths for example has increased it’s stock feeding programme:


“The program has been running nationally for over 10 years and, to date, over 600 farmers and community groups from around the country have joined, using surplus food for stock feed and on-farm compost.”


“The program has also helped Woolworths record a year-on-year reduction of 8 per cent in food waste sent to landfill over the past three years.”


“Adrian Cullen, Woolworths Head of Sustainability said the program was a great way for farmers and community groups to get a hold of additional feed for their livestock or use the material for composting free of charge.”


Clean standards and precautions are needed


It is vital to make clear – that only certain foods can be provided to animals.


Lack of regulations – or not following legislation – can lead to terrible consequences – such as the BSE crisis in the UK or the outbreak of foot and mouth in Britain in 2001. explains:


“The outbreak began on Burnside farm, Northumberland, where uncooked swill – food leftovers – were illegally fed to a barn of pigs. Under the regulation at the time, food wastes had to be cooked to sterilise them and prevent disease-transfer. This was the first step in a series of unfortunate events which led to the costliest animal epidemic the country had ever seen.”


Huge environmental benefits from recycling food waste as swill 

Numerous studies show that recycling food waste as swill is better for the environment than using it as biogas or compost. As long as the food is high quality, healthy and suitable for the animals it makes perfect sense.


Turning Food Waste Into Animal Feed



After the Foot and Mouth outbreak – Britain banned pigswill from recycled food waste – but other countries went in the opposite direction. Now countries including South Korea and Japan use c. 40% of national food waste for animal fodder. reports:


“Farmers use swill not because of its environmental benefits, but because it reduces their feed costs by 40-60%. They have achieved these remarkable results through a science-based approach to swill feeding; swill manufacturers in Japan and South Korea must be registered and their compliance with food safety regulation is monitored. Food wastes are treated for three minutes at 80°C, or 30 minutes at 70°C – both enough to deactivate viruses such as foot-and-mouth. Since the introduction of these regulated systems, no disease outbreaks have been associated with swill feeding in these countries.”


Conclusion on animal feed from food waste process:


Sensible usage of food waste for stockfeeding of animals (animal feed from food waste process) has to play a part in tackling our food waste issues.


Sensible legislation and treatment of food waste is vital to ensure health, safety and animal welfare.


There is no sense at all in throwing perfectly healthy food into landfill – and then having farmers pay good money for fodder.