why recycle food waste?

When food is no longer suitable for consumption, it should be recycled, not sent to landfill. Here's why!

1 save money

Landfill is the most expensive place to send your organisation’s waste. In 2012, recycling a tonne of food waste costs at least £44 less than sending it to landfill. Landfill tax is rising by £8/tonne every year, so the savings increase each year. Landfill sites are filling up and closing down.

2 help the environment

Breaking down in landfill, food waste can produce methane – a greenhouse gas 20 times more potent than CO2 – and a liquid, called leachate (essentially bin juice), which can contaminate water supplies.

3 food waste is a valuable resource

Why not use food waste as a source of renewable energy? Food waste can be used to produce biofertiliser, returning nutrients to the soil. It can also produce renewable energy, heat, and biofuel – here’s how.

4 go zero waste

Once the messy food waste is in its own separate bin, the rest of your waste is dry and much easier to recycle. Food waste recycling is the first key step to going zero waste. Up to 90% of all waste could be recycled, and recycling costs far less than landfill. Boost your business’ sustainability and boast about your green credentials!

5 beat new legislation

Legislation is on its way which requires businesses to recycle their food waste. All UK waste policies emphasise the need to reduce food waste to landfill, and Scotland is the first to introduce this legislation:

  • 1st January 2014 – all food businesses which produce over 50kg of food waste a week will be required to have a separate food waste recycling stream
  • 1st January 2016 – all food businesses which produce over 5kg of food waste a week will be required to have a separate food waste recycling stream
  • 1st January 2021 – all biodegradable municipal waste banned from going to landfill

Find out more from Zero Waste Scotland.

6 join the movement

Aware of the huge economic and environmental benefits, UK businesses of all sizes are already reducing their waste to landfill.  Big names in foodservice have signed up to WRAP’s voluntary agreement> 

  • Prevention target: Reduce food and associated packaging waste arising by 5% by the end of 2015. This will be against a 2012 baseline and be measured by CO2e emissions.
  • Waste management target: Increase the overall rate of food and packaging waste being recycled, sent to anaerobic digestion (AD) or composted to at least 70% by the end of 2015. 

Go to the WRAP website to find out how you can get involved. 

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