This report presents findings from research undertaken by Swinburne University into resident engagement with an onsite composting trial introduced into two apartment blocks by the City of Melbourne. The trial was conducted between February and June 2016, with one building hosting a multi-bin worm farm system and the other hosting an in-vessel composter.
The research is based on observations, a focus group and interviews with residents and the Building Manager from each apartment building.
That there be more education and visual signage about what can be composted.
That in worm farm systems, simple signs should be displayed on each bin to indicate at a glance whether or not that bin needs more food.
That residents be informed about the entire composting process, including where the composter is, how it works and what the compost is being used for.
That residents be given the opportunity to access and make use of the compost products.
That the additional workload involved in overseeing the composting system be estimated and factored in.
That the City of Melbourne should approach the Owner’s Corporation first when considering the installation of a composting system in an apartment building.
The composting systems should be located close to where residents regularly dispose of their waste.
The City of Melbourne continue to offer both types of kitchen caddy to residents.
The City of Melbourne should investigate the payback period for outright purchase, using a sensitivity analysis that assumes various levels of uptake from residents.