Food for Thought - disposing of food waste each week is best

Published Tuesday, 27 November 2018

Residents are being encouraged to use the council’s weekly food waste collection service as the easiest and most efficient way to dispose of unwanted food waste.

Despite 9000 tonnes of food waste being recycled last year as part of the weekly collection service, research shows that 28 percent of rubbish in non-recyclable refuse collections is also food waste, prompting the council to launch its Food for Thought campaign.  

All the food waste collected from across the borough is currently sent to a processing plant in Northamptonshire where it is used to generate electricity as well as producing a fertiliser which can be used in farming.

Statistics show it costs more than £1.7million to dispose of food waste being thrown away in the borough’s non-recyclable refuse collections.  If this could avoided, the savings made could be better used to protect much needed frontline services.  Also, food waste placed in the non-recyclable refuse collection is collected every other week as opposed to the more convenient weekly collection service for food waste.

“We are contacting residents and asking everyone to make the best use of our food waste collection service.  A big thank you goes to residents who have already taken up this challenge but we all need to make sure we play our part.  We are highly supportive of residents composting their own food waste at home, such as peelings etc, but the council is also able to compost all food, such as meat, which would not be suitable at home” said Councillor William Huntington-Thresher, Executive Councillor for Environment and Community Services. 

Councillor Huntington-Thresher added, “It might also be for some residents that if they notice they are routinely throwing away unused food, that they might buy less food, which would show a direct saving in their household expenditure and be welcome all round.”

All food is included in the council’s collection scheme, from plate scrappings to mouldy or out of date food, including peelings, tea bags and meat, raw or cooked.  For full details about the food waste collection service, including details about different food types, how to get a collection container if needed and a reminder that compostable liners are available at discounted prices from all the borough’s libraries, at £2.50 for 50 liners, visit