Loop Organics operates a liquid food waste soil injection business on farms in the Sydney region, sourcing liquids from bakeries, poultry producers, and food preparation and manufacturing. The liquids are applied to agricultural land by subsurface injection, and are used to provide nutrients, organic matter and moisture to improve soil fertility and grow animal fodder crops such as oats, sorghum or barley. In this way, nutrients are returned to the soil to enhance food production, closing the loop between consumers and producers.
Lisa Rawlinson, the Director of Loop Organics, is an agricultural scientist who started one of the first soil injection businesses in Sydney in 1996. Our skills and experience are used to carefully monitor and control operations so that the soil and crops are provided with the optimum conditions for plant production. We believe in positive engagement with regulators and industry stakeholders.
Site Environmental Assessment
Before any area is applied with liquid organic wastes, a site assessment is carried out and a Review of Environmental Factors is prepared. The property is mapped to show all relevant geophysical features, such as waterways, dams and vulnerable groundwater. A soil survey is carried out to identify and map soil types. Protective buffer zones are put in place around any sensitive site features identified.
Soil injection vehicles (SIVs) are used to inject products below the soil surface at a nutrient limited rate, which is adjusted to suit the particular crop or pasture that is to be grown. The SIV places the liquids at a depth of approximately 150 mm in furrows created by a specially designed plough. Application at this depth results in maximum nutrient uptake by plant roots and provides a soil barrier between the liquid and the surrounding environment. Loop Organics operates tractor-drawn SIVs with flotation tyres which are designed to minimise soil compaction.
Liquid wastes are transported to the farms in enclosed dedicated tankers. Tankers are used for collection of food wastes and organic residues only. The wastes are transferred directly to the SIV, or to temporary storage tanks.
Record Keeping and Reporting
Loop Organics maintains a database which records:
- Laboratory data from analysis of food wastes and soil.
- For each paddock, the type and volume of waste that was applied, the application rate, date of application, the crop or pasture sown.
- For each waste type, the results of analysis and classification, ongoing monitoring, transport, storage and application dates and the quantity received.
- Copies of REFs, monitoring reports and other records are provided to regulators and clients on request.