Steve Hunter - Resource Operations Manager, Closed Loop
Across four weeks, locations in Sydney and Melbourne were transformed into a hub of chaotic energy, exotic smells and street food. Following the example set by hawker-style food vendors all over Asia, some of the cities’ much-loved restaurants, cafes and food trucks gather next to bars and DJ’s to offer an array of tasty dishes for the crowds to sample as they take in the vibrant atmosphere.
With over 70 food stalls and 9 bars across the two sites, Fairfax was very conscious that both events would produce a huge amount of waste. Their priority was to manage this waste in the most efficient way to ensure the maximum volume was recycled. This was the first time the Melbourne Night Noodle market had been run and the popularity was greatly underestimated with triple the estimated attendees enjoying the festival, bringing the head count to around 300,000.
There was a two bin system front of house with multi-bin system for back of house to capture the greater number of waste streams. Food organics recycling was introduced for the first time in 2013 alongside co-mingled, glass and cardboard recycling. Each vendor was also equipped with a grey water tank and used oil was collected for transportation to off-site recycling. Closed Loop were able to increase staffing levels at a moment’s notice, especially for the Melbourne Night Noodle market where popularity was underestimated.
Achieving ambitious recycling targets for your event is possible even with the variability of weather, visitor numbers and operational challenges. Fairfax and Closed Loop worked closely to ensure that as many unknowns were accounted for. Next year there is no reason we can’t increase recycling rates further.