Australia Government support for Recycling Innovation

As the Global Plastic Crisis continues to grow, Australian State and Federal Governments can play a vital role in supporting the next phase of recycling innovation.

In recent days, Senators in Australia delivered a report to the federal government showcasing why Australia needs to ban single use plastic.[1]  If accepted, all single-use plastics – including plastic bags, takeaway containers, plastic-lined coffee cups and chip packets – would be phased out by 2023.

State Governments across Australia have also enacted policies such as a ban on plastic bags at supermarkets[2] and, the implementation on new container deposit schemes. Whilst these policies will have major positive environment impacts; when it comes to the bigger picture, Government support for industry innovation is arguably more important than just implementing public policy.

Container Deposit Systems believe innovation in recycling manufacturing will be the key to achieving long term benefits; ultimately creating a circular recycling economy.  State and Federal Governments also see innovation as a core solution and thus, there are many government incentives for companies to join the recycling revolution.  Below are the current Federal Government incentives* that are in place to support Industry Innovation.

Federal Government Innovation Initiatives

Research & Development (R&D) Tax Incentive

The Australian R&D Tax Incentive is a program designed to encourage innovation and experimental activities via a tax rebate on expenditure incurred during the project process.  This is Australia’s largest innovation fund and supports businesses across a wide range of industries; including waste management and recycling. 

Companies who are engaging in activities can claim an additional rebate of 13.5% - on top of their current tax rate for the year.  The scheme is complex, but highly rewarding. Visit: for more information and eligibility.


Accelerating Commercialisation Grant

The Accelerating Commercialisation Grant is designed to provides businesses with matched funding of up to $1 million to cover eligible commercialisation costs to help them to take novel products, processes and services to market. For new recycling technologies, grants such as this can support bringing concepts and ideas to the domestic and international market place.

The grant is focused on supporting future industries and technologies; which makes it an ideal fit for the recycling industry which needs to reform due to th China Export Ban.  The grant is highly competitive but offers large rewards to successful applicants (besides up to $1 million in funding). This includes being provided with a Commercialisation Advisor[3], connected to industry experts and receiving access to additional funding through the Entrepreneurs Program.[4] To find out more visit:


Cooperative Research Centres (CRC) Grants

This program provides medium to long term industry-led collaborations with matched funding to solve industry problems and improve the competitiveness, productivity and sustainability of Australian industries. For the recycling industry, this grant provides the opportunity for large project and industry collaboration to solve the major and immediate issues with recycling supply chains in Australia.

CRC grants provide CRCs with up to 50% of the resources with no specified limit to funding available for each CRC. (Note, the CRC collaboration must at least match the amount of grant funding sought through cash and/or in-kind contributions.)

The grant is seeking be submissions from groups of applicants who have agreed to collaborate to support a specific industry need. The funding covers research, wages, commercialisation and capital equipment expenses.

To find out more visit:


Innovation Connections

For established businesses seeking to expand technologies, the Innovation Connections Grant can provide SMEs with access to expert technology advice to address technology and knowledge gaps and collaborate with the research sector in developing new ideas with commercial potential. This included up to $50,000 in matched funding to work on collaborative projects.

Companies can utilise this funding to either identify new technology, knowledge and expertise or, identify critical and strategic research needs and pathways to engage and collaborate with the research sector.

For the recycling industry, research and technologies will be vital in meeting the recycling demand in Australia and potentially, overseas markets. To find out more visit:


There are also a series of smaller based and state grants and programs to encourage recycling innovations. These include:







Do you know of other government funded incentives? If yes, let us know!

*Please note, all information is correct as of June 2018. Grant Information may have been updated by governments since this time.


Why do we need recycling innovation in Australia?

“At Container Deposit Systems, we have achieved our success via industry collaboration with other leading innovators.” Said Brett Duncanson, “Thus, we highly encourage more innovation in this industry to support the overall goals of an improved Australian Recycling System.”

Australia needs to reinvent it’s recycling industry to manage the high levels of waste we produce.  Australia produces 2.23kg of waste per capita per day which is almost to double the global average of 1.2kg per capita per day.[5]  In combination with growing waste, Australia is also feeling the impact of the China Export Ban; which has resulted in a national plastic crisis.[6]

Innovation in the Recycling Industry needs to be the core strategy to managing Australia’s waste and recycling needs.  This includes developing technologies to streamline recycling processes. With innovation focused strategies, recycling facilities can achieve the productivity efficiencies and profitability targets needed to drive the industry into a new circular recycling economy.


About Container Deposit Systems

Container Deposit Systems was formed with a vision to oversee the implementation of improved operational practices in recycling facilities.  The company offers a range of services to recycling depot facilities to drive productivity improvements and transition traditional recycling facilities into modern technically advanced operators.

The company achieve this through patented technologies which deliver manufacturing automation to auto-sort materials via a highly sensitive multi-sensor integration.  Systems integrations enable facilities to further gain efficiencies through workflows, materials handling, logistic processes, facility layout and design, customer interaction and data acquisition and management. 

Container Deposit Systems technologies are designed and manufactured in Australia with local partners Sage Automation and Macweld Engineering.

For more information, please contact us directly.