Wastewater from the kitchens of food related businesses is deemed to be trade waste. The waste stream carries contaminants such as cooking oil, grease, fat, food scraps, organic materials and harsh chemical cleaners. Oil, fat and grease are a major concern to us as they adhere to the walls of pipes which often results in blockages and overflows of sewerage into homes, business premises and the environment.

Overflows are unpleasant, inconvenient and costly to clean up. The costs are generally shared by the community, although individual business owners may be held responsible if they act inappropriately by deliberately tipping the wastes down their sinks. 

We require food businesses to hold a trade waste approval, to install effective grease arrestors and to service them.

Food related businesses that require trade waste approval and grease arrestors

  • Bakeries/pies shops
  • Butchers 
  • Bistros
  • Canteens 
  • Catering 
  • Cafeterias 
  • Chicken/poultry shop
  • Child care centres 
  • Clubs with kitchens
  • Coffee shops
  • Community halls
  • Delicatessens
  • Doughnut shops
  • Fast foods
  • Fish shops
  • Hospitals
  • Hotels 
  • Home based catering
  • Ice cream parlours
  • Motels
  • Nursing homes
  • Restaurants
  • Supermarkets
  • Takeaway food shops

While this list is comprehensive it may not mention your business.

Trade waste requirements for your business

  1. You must complete a trade waste application and return to us.
  2. You must install a sub water meter/s to measure all incoming water supplied to the trade waste process areas of your business. These meters are read six monthly for billing purposes.
  3. You must also install a cleaners sink. This is a multi environmental sink for use in commercial business designed to be used for cleaning only.
  4. We may require you to install dry basket arrestors (in the floor and under sink). These baskets are intended for use in commercial and domestic kitchens to screen out and retain solid waste from the wastewater. Screening is achieved by means of a perforated basket. The basket can be removed when full, the residue emptied into a bin and consigned to landfill. A secondary screening plate fitted below the basket will hold the solid waste to protect downstream equipment in the event that the sink is emptied without the basket being in position.
  5. You must install a grease arrestor according to the to the manufacturer’s instructions. The work must be done by a licensed plumber/drainer. The purpose of a grease arrestor is to keep the fats and oils out of our sewer lines and they also serve as a means of preventing blocked drains on your property. You will not be able to open your business without a grease arrestor. Our Trade Waste officers determine the size of the arrestor and frequency of pump out.
  6. If you are not sure if you are a trade waste discharger and need more information on the correct requirements for your business (e.g. grease arrestor size, water meters, etc) please contact us.

Sub water meters

We require the installation of sub water meter/s for the premise to measure all incoming water to the trade waste process areas. A plumbing permit must be obtained from our Development Assessment Branch for the installation of the sub water meter and fit-out. These meters are read six monthly by a Trade Waste officer during their inspections. The calculations are then used to determine the charges to be applied to the property rate notice.

Grease arrestors 

Grease arrestor cleaning and maintenance is performed by a licensed waste collector. The frequency of cleaning will depend on the size of the grease arrestor and the amount of greasy waste washed into the arrestor. The consequence of not maintaining your grease arrestor are rancid grease and oil odours, greasy waste entering the sewer pipes with the potential to cause blockages and the possibility of greasy waste spill in your property. It is your responsibility to organise the cleaning of your grease arrestor.

Trade waste pre-treatment and servicing requirements

We require that servicing of all pre-treatment devices by the pump out method is to be carried out by a liquid waste transport operator who has the appropriate licenses and complies with our Trade Waste Management Plan (TWMP).

  • EPA licence (Section 93 Environmental Protection Act 1994).
  • Our Environmental Health Services approval 

Ways to reduce greasy waste

  • Collect all food particles and place them in the bin (scraps, peelings etc).
  • Use less cooking oil where possible.
  • Pour used oil into a container or drum for recycling, and not down the sink.
  • Scrape or wipe oil and grease from utensils and plates prior to washing with water.
  • Dry sweep floor before wet washing.
  • Ensure that strainers are fitted to all sink outlets. This will further reduce solids from entering the grease arrestor.
  • Keep cleaning chemicals in a designated area and handle carefully to avoid spills.
  • Have a licensed transporter pump out and clean your grease arrestor regularly. Contact us for advice on cleaning frequency.
  • Do not put oil down the drain.

Related documents

Liquid trade waste application form (online)

Trade waste liquid discharge - category 3 and 4 form (PDF for print)

Trade Waste Management Plan

2.54 Trade Waste Policy