Liverpool warned about food waste equipment competition

Liverpool city council has been urged to “get a grip” on waste policies by banning side waste and introducing separate food waste collections to increase recycling rates in the region.

The composition analysis found that a third of residual waste was food, with 18.7% containing items which could be recycled

And, the council has been warned that it must move quickly as there is likely to be a “high level of competition” for collection equipment once food waste collections become mandatory “within 2-5 years”.

The call was made in report which went before the council last week (23 August), which was compiled by the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority partnership, made up of five councils in the area.

The partnership carried out a composition analysis during the summer as part of works on how the region will be prepared for upcoming consistent collections legislation.

This composition analysis found that 18.7% of collected residual waste could have been placed into recycling collections available, with food waste making up 33% of residual waste.

“As there is a very strong expectation that food waste collection will become mandatory within 2-5 years, we must start planning and preparations, and be ready to procure services,” the report said.

It added: “There is likely to be a high level of competition for waste collection equipment including vehicles and storage bins/caddies.

“We also need to start to get a grip on our household waste collection policies to move to a position where side waste placed out with the purple bin is no longer tolerated. This will encourage residents to make better use of their recycling bin.


The analysis work involved emptying the contents of purple residual waste bins and sorting the contents into the various materials found within for example food, sanitary and recyclable waste.

Competition for food waste collection equipment was predicted to rise as more councils seek services, the report said

The report forms part of work by the partnership to emphasise the waste strategy’s links and contribution to the region’s Pathways to Net Zero Climate Strategy.

In the report, the partnership explained that “efforts must be focused on influencing behavioural change to reduce waste, avoid contamination, improve performance and protect society from the impacts of climate change.

“If we are serious about zero waste, net zero carbon by 2040 and implementing upcoming changes we really have got to get ready starting now,” it added.

Several recommendations were put before and accepted by the council.

These include:

  •  Develop programmes to change behaviour and ensure the right materials are in the right bins, reducing                       contamination and increasing the capture of recyclables
  • Encourage more people to participate in recycling schemes
  • Prepare residents for upcoming changes to collections
  • Prepare to start food waste collections as soon as possible, in order to avoid competitive disadvantage in procuring waste collection equipment, including vehicles and caddies

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