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Review of AS 4454-2012 – Australian Standard for Composts, Soil Conditioners and Mulches

In May 2021, as part of the National Soils Strategy, the Australian Government announced the Food Waste for Healthy Soils (FWHS) Initiative in the Federal Budget. This project is part of the supporting elements, which seeks to facilitate the production of clean and safe recycled organic products by reviewing and updating the Australian Standard for Composts, Soil Conditioners and Mulches (AS4454-2012) and/or by developing other supporting mechanisms and approaches needed to achieve these goals.  The diversion of organic residues from landfill for use as soil conditioners and mulches has many potential benefits for soil health and production. The FWHS initiative aims to help support this through various mechanisms aimed at facilitating the production of clean, safe and high quality recycled organic products. Updating and modernising AS4454 is a key part of this strategy. DCCEEW required an expert group of consultants to deliver a complete review of AS 4454 and supporting elements.

The project is led by Dr Kevin Wilkinson from Frontier Ag & Environment supported by partners from Science into Action, Murrang Earth Sciences, Australian Environment Agency, and the University of Queensland – CROWN. Find out more information from the project website:


What we did

  • Starting in August 2023, this project has involved working with a group of experts to deep engage with core stakeholders to review the Standard, and the supporting elements like feedstock inputs, contractual arrangements, regulatory levels, and many more elements in the full supply chain from inputs to products.

  • Leading the engagement process and design, we created a process for input from participants across the supply chain akin to a lite co-design approach. Core Stakeholders have assisted in defining the problems to be solved, testing options for solutions, and road-testing the practicality of the options suggested.

  • Create a pathway for implementation for the preferred options, including articulating any R&D required.


The Result

As of June 2024, this project is ongoing.

Find out more information from the project website: There are project outputs to date linked on the website.


Contact us


+61 (0) 418 393 489


PO Box 46, Fairfield VIC Australia 3078

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