A FOOD processing company must pay an $8060 fine after it failed to manage appropriate environmental controls around dead animals composting on open ground at a Girgarre piggery.
Environment Protection Authority Victoria officers inspected company George Weston Foods' Girgarre piggery in October 2018 after pollution reports about bad odour emanating from the site.
The officers observed dead livestock being allowed to decompose in an above-ground pile, with no controls to stop impacts to stormwater and groundwater.
Deceased livestock, if composted onsite, must be managed appropriately. Surface deposits of carcases can result in odour and contamination of surface water and groundwater systems.
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Authority north-west regional manager Scott Pigdon said the company received a pollution abatement notice to bring its operations in line with best practice guidelines.
"On 7 February this year on a return inspection, it was clear their practices had not been modified and the operation was still occurring on bare ground," he said.
"Only hay bales had been put in place to prevent run-off. It was clear that the notice requirement had not been met.
"Composting of deceased livestock is a viable waste management option. However, the activity must be conducted in a way the ensures that risks to the environment are managed."
Mr Pigdon said the company had been fined $8060.
He said people could find information on environmental controls for composting on the authority's website.
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