Cheshire East council is to roll out a food waste recycling service from January 2020 as part of efforts to reach a 65% recycling rate by 2035.
The new service has been announced at a time when the council – which recorded a 54.4 % recycling rate in 2017/18 – is undertaking a scheduled five year review of its waste strategy.
Ralph Kemp, Cheshire East council’s head of environmental services, said: “Recycling food waste rather than disposing of it in your black bin is the right thing to do, as it enables us to recycle it into high-quality compost and return the organic matter to the soil.”
From 6 January, the 380,000 residents of Cheshire East will be given a small green caddy into which food waste can be separated from everyday household waste.
A supply of biodegradable liners will be provided with the caddy, though use of these is optional.
Once full, the caddy is to be emptied into the garden waste bin, which will be collected fortnightly.
The service will be delivered by Hull-based recycling and waste management firm Biowise, which in January 2018 was awarded a £30m contract, for a minimum of 15 years, for the treatment of organic waste in the area by the council (see letsrecycle.com story).
The council confirmed that the mixed food and garden waste would be taken to a special processing plant near Crewe, operated by Biowise, which was built as part of the contract.
The firm had planning approved in July 2018 to develop the in-vessel composting facility to process up to 75,000 tonnes per annum of food and biodegradable waste.
“We encourage those with space to continue to compost at home with suitable garden and vegetable peelings”
Cllr Kemp added: “We are pleased to offer this new food waste recycling service but continue to encourage residents to explore ways of reducing food waste though our Love Food, Hate Waste campaign.
“We encourage those with space to continue to compost at home with suitable garden and vegetable peelings.”
Currently residents are told to put their food waste in their black household waste bin, a measure that the council claims costs twice as much as it would do to recycle it.
Most of this household waste is sent for energy from waste, and a small amount to landfill.
The black bins are collected fortnightly, while there has recently been the introduction of new collection calendars across Cheshire East in preparation of the new food waste recycling service.