Going for compost gold turns Coast into new sustainability supplier

Solstice Media
3 min readSep 22, 2021

Innovative Gold Coast businesses are strengthening the city’s position as a key player in the rapidly growing organics recycling and soil fertility industry.

Seed the Ground is a not-for-profit organisation that collects and composts two tonnes of spent coffee grinds from local cafes. Photo: @amydeboer_photography on Instagram

Joining the Gold Coast’s traditional reputation built on the tourism attributes of sun, sand and surf, is the healthy soils push, which is increasing the capacity and economic contribution of organics recycling operations in South East Queensland.

Gold Coast-based Wormtec is at the forefront of the composting movement, supplying organic microbial fertiliser development to support healthy soil across Australia and worldwide.

“It’s getting bigger every week,” Wormtec owner and founder Greg Plevey said.

“We’re currently pushed about as far as we can be pushed.”

Having developed innovative technology to extract soil microbes from high-grade worm castings and composts, Plevey said the niche product was in high demand across agricultural sectors.

“It’s real science and real innovation that goes back to how nature intended your soil to be,” he said.

“We’ve had to go backwards to go forwards, but it’s what’s needed to help keep future generations of farmers on the land and the land sustainable.”

Just north of the Gold Coast, NuGrow, is Queensland’s largest recycling and sustainable waste management operation, upending the “take-make-dispose” economy by transforming organic waste into premium soils, high-grade composts, and soil fertilisers and conditioners.

In the past 18 months, its recycled green organics and compost have transformed Gold Coast sports fields, city landscaping projects and a road upgrade.

At the other end of the scale, there is a groundswell of small not-for-profits and start-ups growing from the composting wave.

At the southern end of the Gold Coast, Miami coffee shops have emerged as fertile sources for community composting hub Seed the Ground, which is in the process of tripling its output after…

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