About 45,000* tonnes of expanded polystyrene (EPS) is produced in Australia each year.
Much of this EPS is in long-term use (such as waffle pods used in housing construction and engineering/manufacturing components). However, about 40% (or 18,000 tonnes p.a) is in single-use or short term packaging that can be recycled. We only recycle about 27% of EPS.
Polystyrene packaging can’t be recycled in your kerbside recycling bin. If you put it in your rubbish bin it takes up space in landfill and does not break down.
You can help the environment by dropping off polystyrene for recycling at locations across Melbourne (see below). Your polystyrene is recycled and re-manufactured into domestic building products.
*Data Source: 2014 National Plastics Recycling Survey, SRU
What is expanded polystyrene?
There are many kinds of foam and plastic packaging. Expanded polystyrene is made by expanding beads of polystyrene plastic (like popcorn) which are then fused together. Expanded polystyrene can be easily identified if the beads of foam can be easily seen when foam is broken.
What can be recycled?
You can recycle all clean white Expanded Polystyrene Foam (EPS) including:
Packaging for small and large appliances
White polystyrene fruit and vegetable boxes
What can't be recycled?
No coloured polystyrene or foam
No meat trays or other similar food packaging
No plastic or foam wrapping
No tape or strapping
No bean bag beans
No peanut shaped loose foam packaging
Recycle your polystyrene here
Contact the facilities prior to drop off to check addresses, opening hours or if fees apply (the Boroondara and Moonee Valley centres only accept polystyrene from their council residents). Facilities are listed for your information and do not constitute endorsement of any organisation, product or service.
More polystyrene recycling sites can be found on the Expanded Polystyrene Australia website.
648 Riversdale Road, Camberwell
174 Old Geelong Road, Brooklyn
380 Ferntree Gully Road, Notting Hill
188 Holmes Road, Aberfeldie
Last updated: 30/06/2020