Zero Waste

Towards Zero Waste
Bentleigh Farmers Market is a “Towards Zero Waste” market which means we are aiming to produce zero waste from the market (ideally this includes all preparatory and behind the scenes work too).

Why Zero Waste?
Because we live on an amazing planet, the only one in the entire universe (that we know of) that supports life. This planet is under enormous stress from overconsumption and waste of resources. In natural systems there is no waste. We support nature. We support this planet, our home. Help us support it too.


The BFM aims to achieve Zero Waste through a number of programs and strategies including the following:


No Plastic Bag Policy



BYO Mug Policy



3 Bin Waste Station Policy



Towards Zero Waste Educational Program



For all enquiries regarding the Towards Zero Waste program, contact Sarah at



No Plastic Bag Policy



  • The BFM have adopted a No Plastic Bag Policy
  • The BFM are Enforcing a No Plastic Bag Policy at the market. Stallholders are not allowed to provide customers with any plastic carry bags. They are allowed to provide paper bags but we encourage customers to bring their own bags.
  • We will actively promote our BYO bag policy and program on all market literature and advertising material
  • Re-usable jute bags will be for sale at every market.
  • An educational process is underway for public and stallholders to phase out the use of any other plastic bags at the market, i.e. “bagged produce” except where food safety requirements exist through:
  • Actively promoting the use of paper bags, reusable containers, and reusable bags
  • Selling reusable fruit and vegetable mesh bags at the market
  • Highlighting good practise at our market via this website and social media.
  • Encourage stallholders to support customers who bring their own containers for refill for example honey jars, and olive oil bottles.
  • Click here for full No Plastic Bag policy



Encouraging a BYO Mug Policy


  • We are encouraging all customers to BYO mugs, and/or use reusable cups
  • We will actively promote our BYO mug policy and program on all market literature and advertising material.
  • We will sell a small supply of “keep cups” for customers who do not BYO at every market
  • We will have a “wash and go system” for reusable cups and mugs.
  • Stallholders selling any take away items are encouraged to use reusable containers as a first priority, compostable cups and containers as a second priority and recyclable containers as a last resort.
  • The coffee merchant, The Little Coffee Company is using Planet Cups, a compostable take away coffee cup and we are evaluating the compostability of these cups in the existing school based compost system, to ensure that these cups are compostable in non- industrial facilities to ensure that they do not end up as landfill. The results of this will be published on the Planet Cup website, and this website.
  • Click here for full BYO Mug policy



Waste Stations for sorting waste

  • The BFM will have 3 waste stations, each comprising a recycling bin, a compost bin, and a landfill bin.
  • We will have prominent signage and colour coded lids on all bins to make it easy for customers to compost food and organic waste and to recycle products, and as a last resort, to bin all other items.
  • We will audit the waste streams entering the bins, to determine the effectiveness of our waste strategies.
  • Ensuring farmers take home all waste they generate at the market. This helps them to see how much waste they produce, and to be responsible for it. We understand that most of their waste will be compostable materials that can be returned to the land via farm based composting systems.


Towards Zero Waste Education Programs



  • We will have a zero waste stall at each market to promote the program and provide advice, education and assistance to customers and stallholders.
  • With your support, we aim to radically reduce the amount of waste going to landfill and ultimately to be a zero waste market.
  • We have introduced a number of practices to reduce waste for example:
  • replacing plastic spoons with silver ones- check out the new and reusable tasting spoons at Yumm Foods
  • return used plastic plant pots to Tanglewood Herbs- but please ensure that you only return ones you bought from them, and return used plastic packaging to Raynor's Stone Fruit, and they will wash and reuse it.
  • many stallholders wrap produce in paper, and now use paper bags instead of plastic, for example Sunny Creek Organics.