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Trade Waste

Media Release

Media Release June 2021

What is trade waste?

Trade waste is liquid wastewater from a food business or industrial entity that enters the wastewater system. This includes all water that is used for the preparation or cooking of food, washing dishes or cleaning, that goes down the drain.

Under The Water Industry Act 2012 , it is illegal to discharge any wastewater other than domestic waste into the wastewater system without an approval.

To protect the wastewater system some trade waste may need to be treated before it is discharged. Treatment might include removing harmful chemicals or fats or can correct the characteristics of the wastewater, like its pH or temperature.

Whether your business is food related or industrial, you will be creating wastewater (or trade waste) that needs to be treated before it can be discharged to the sewer network.

More information and advice

Our team is here to provide you with advice and support with any of your trade waste issues. Please contact us by phone on 8391 7200, email our trade waste team;

General trade waste FAQs

Do I produce trade waste?

The most common types of trade waste do not contain toxic or harmful substances and are produced every day from businesses such as cafes and restaurants, mechanical workshops, shopping centres, theme parks, hotels and food processing and manufacturing premises. Common activities that produce trade waste include rinsing and washing utensils and dishes, equipment and vehicle cleaning, preparing surfaces for metal finishing and food processing.

If you are a business owner or operator who generates wastewater from a business activity, it is likely you are producing trade waste.

Why manage trade waste?

Mount Barker District Council’s wastewater networks are designed for the transport and treatment of liquid waste from typical household activities. When untreated trade waste enters our network it damages pipes and causes blockages and spills. It can also disrupt the wastewater treatment process, harm the environment, and present a safety risk to the public, Council staff and contractors.

Our trade waste management plan manages risk to:

  • Protect the health & safety of workers.
  • Protect the integrity of the wastewater system.
  • Protect wastewater treatment plant processes.
  • Protect the environment, particularly the receiving environment.
  • Facilitate & provide opportunities for re-use of effluent & biosolids.

What is my legal obligation?

The primary legal obligation, applicable to all trade waste producers in the district who discharge to a wastewater network, is that they hold a valid Trade Waste approval and/or Agreement with the Council.

Please refer Council’s Trade Waste Management Plan for more information.

What is a trade waste approval?

A trade waste approval is a legal contract between the property owner, the trade waste producer and the Council. The approval sets out the conditions you must adhere to for discharging trade waste into the wastewater system. If you are a trade waste producer, you must apply to the Council for a trade waste approval before discharging to sewer.