Keep it clean at Brisbane Markets

Are you looking for ways to keep costs down in your business? Keeping Brisbane Markets beautiful is a great place to start!

Brisbane Markets Tenants are being urged to review their waste management practices to ensure they are recycling appropriately, which not only helps the environment, but also the bottom line of your business.

Each day, at least 6 cubic metres of waste is collected from hard stand areas across the Brisbane Markets site.

With the addition of state government and local council levies and fees, waste costs are steadily increasing. Just because your business doesn’t pay for it directly, doesn’t mean you’re not forking out cash for the privilege.

Disposal fees are just one of the costs associated with waste management at the Brisbane Markets.

Each business day, it takes four full-time BML cleaning staff plus the road sweeper and driver to:

  • pick up produce which is often discarded from or swept out of tenancies;
  • pack down cardboard boxes which have not been flattened as required; and
  • collect pine pallets that have been discarded on the Common Areas.

These staffing resources come at a significant cost to BML and to Tenants, through recovered outgoings.

Accordingly, there are a number of immediate actions that can be taken by Tenants, which will achieve savings in waste disposal costs and increase BML’s staff productivity.

Organic waste

In the past, the majority of general waste removed from Brisbane Markets was organic green waste.

With BML’s partnership with Foodbank Queensland (FBQ) and Veolia’s organic waste bins available, the volume of organic waste has reduced significantly over the past three years. However, there are improvements that can still be made, most significantly is to have unsellable produce removed from site before it spoils.

Foodbank Queensland is a Brisbane Markets access-approved Service Provider, so the process for donating fresh produce is easy and straightforward. Simply call Bob McMillan on 0427 157 665 or visit to arrange for Foodbank Queensland to collect your donation from the location of your choice.

Recyclable cardboard

One way to reduce your general waste costs is to ensure that all cardboard, excluding waxed items, is flat packed and placed in a cardboard recycling bin, which can be provided by your waste management contractor. The disposal costs for cardboard are far less expensive than those that apply to general waste.

You should note that while BML does collect flat-packed cardboard from the Central Trading Area for recycling, this does not extend to Tenant warehouses and other areas of the Brisbane Markets site.

Pine pallets

BML’s cleaning team spends a significant amount of time collecting pine pallets from Common Areas, transporting these to a holding facility. The team then sorts the pallets into those that can be recycled and those which need to be disposed of as general waste. Each year, more than 110 tonnes of pine pallets are collected by Veolia and disposed of as general waste.

While pine pallets are used as a low cost, light-weight option for transporting goods, there are waste disposal fees that apply to the end user. Given that businesses at Brisbane Markets are often the end user of these pallets, BML and Tenants ultimately pay the price for their disposal through staffing resources, operational expenditure and outgoings.

Road sweeper

BML’s road sweeper clears and cleans all Brisbane Markets roads and common area hardstand by the close of business each day.

For many years, it has been evident that some Tenants and other Markets users simply dump or sweep produce or other waste from their Tenancies onto the hardstand with the expectation that the road sweeper will collect this waste.

With the increases of waste fees and levys, this is now a very costly way to dispose of waste.

Each day, the BML road sweeper’s 6 m³ “hopper” is full to the brim and , on busy days, the hopper needs to be emptied twice. While most of this was originally organic waste, because it is mixed with waste and debris within the road sweeper, it must be disposed of as general waste thereby increasing the costs of its disposal.

Protecting the natural environment, preventing pollution and using best practices for the disposal of waste are all covered under the Brisbane Markets Regulations, including restricting individuals from dumping or discarding waste outside of the appropriate bin.

If your bin or lid is damaged in any way, please contact your waste management Service Provider to arrange for the repair or replacement of same as soon as possible.

If you require assistance with your current waste management controls or would like to find out more about other services that may be available, please do not hesitate to contact BML’s Operations Department on (07) 3915 4350 or

An online copy of the Brisbane Markets Regulations is available here.

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