Merseyside Waste Disposal Authority (MRWA) are launching their “WASTE CAN WAIT” campaign to help and support residents with their household, food and green waste problems during the Coronavirus lockdown.
Carl Beer, MRWA Chief Executive said: “We know that it’s difficult for all Liverpool City Region residents at the moment with our Household Waste Recycling Centres closed, and in some cases things like green and garden waste collections suspended.
The "WASTE CAN WAIT” campaign will provide a range of help, information and signposting on a range of subjects including how to manage food waste – tips and recipes for using up leftovers and store cupboard items, home composting and making the best use of your green waste, as well as some important information for to help residents to better manage their household waste during this challenging time.”
The campaign will provide advice for the day to day issues and will help residents think differently about the waste they are producing during the lockdown.
Cllr Tony Concepcion, MRWA Chairperson said: “ We know during the lockdown it’s tempting to start all of those DIY jobs that have been put off for so long – or have that spring clean and clear out. But what we want residents to consider is where all that waste and recycling will go – we think “WASTE CAN WAIT” and we’d encourage them to store it safely if they really need to undertake these activities.
Ideally postpone them until our Recycling Centres are back open, and our kerbside collections are back to full strength, and we’ll be glad to help you to dispose and recycle.”
WASTE CAN WAIT! Managing your waste and recycling while at home
With the government advising many of us to stay at home it might be an idea to try and manage the amount of waste being created in your household. We’ve put together a list of tips, advice and ideas that might help keep your bin from over-flowing.
- Our Recycling Centres are closed at the minute so maybe now isn’t the time for major DIY or big home improvements. Please try and keep your household waste down to a minimum and maybe put off those big projects for the time being.
- Similarly, please keep any bulky household waste that needs to go to one of our Recycling Centres safe, dry and secure for when we reopen.
- Please keep electrical items out of any of your bins at home – hang onto them until we reopen!
- Noticed an item of clothing has a hole in? Can you repair it? Have a look online for video guides on how to repair clothes – and you might learn a new skill!
- All textiles can be recycled so please put them aside until you can take them to a donation point OR reuse old fabrics as cloths to use instead of disposable wipes
- If you need to go food shopping don’t forget to bring your own reusable bags.
- We all need to make sure we aren’t wasting any food so remember to store food correctly – read the label if you aren’t sure. Use your fridge and freezer and use up leftovers where you can.
- We still want your household recycling – but when putting it in your bin remember to leave it loose, don’t bag the items. If you aren’t sure find out from Recycle Right.
- Kids looking to do something creative? Check out these ideas to make toys out of recycled materials –
- If you can compost grass cuttings and hedge trimmings please do so, and if you can’t do that then keep your garden waste until we reopen.
- Please don’t leave any waste outside the Recycling Centres! Leaving waste outside the Recycling Centres or anywhere else is classed as fly tipping and is a criminal offence for which people could be prosecuted.
- Regularly check your local council’s website for updates on changes to collections where you live.
WASTE CAN WAIT! Get composting and reduce green waste
The government is advising as many of us as possible to stay home as much as we can in order to help key workers, relieve strain on the NHS and ultimately stop us getting sick.
It’s a difficult time we’re living through, but we can all help each other as family, friends, neighbours and as a community.
With so many of us at home it’s inevitable that household waste will increase, which puts pressure on the waste collection, recycling and disposal network. In addition, carbon associated waste in particular is an added worry in that it has the potential to cause changes to the climate.
So one way we can all help is to keep waste at a minimum - get composting!
We’ve already written some advice about keeping household waste down and about managing food and reducing food waste, but here you’ll find information all about composting at home.
Home composting is a great way to keep your garden clippings and your kitchen food waste out of the bin. You can put in all sorts including garden clippings, flowers, fruit peelings, eggshells, tea bags, coffee grounds, ripped up cardboard, tissues.
It is one of the best ways to reduce the amount of waste we produce and lessen carbon emissions – research shows that a third of the contents of the average bin can be composted! The Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations said that if food waste was a country, it would be the third largest emitter of carbon after China and the US! (Source).
Composting is nature’s own way of recycling. By converting your kitchen and garden waste into compost you will not only reduce the amount of material you’re putting into your household bin, but as a bonus you will also cut the amount of methane and carbon dioxide emitted into the atmosphere – significant greenhouse gases that contribute to climate change.
The end product is also a great nutrition feed for your garden and plants and a soil improver!
What can I compost?
A lot of people think that garden waste is the only thing that you can put into your compost bin. But there are actually loads more everyday organic waste items from your home and garden that you can add to enrich your compost.
Things you CAN add to your compost bin include:
- Gross mowings
- Old flowers
- House plants
- Fruit scraps and peels
- Veg scraps and peelings
- Coffee grounds & filter paper
- Tea bags and tea leaves
- Spent bedding plants
- Comfrey leaves
- Rhubarb leaves
- Young annual weeds
- Pond algae & seaweed
- Egg shells and boxes
- Cereal boxes
- Corrugated cardboard packaging
- Toilet & kitchen roll tubes
- Garden prunings
- Dry leaves
- Hedge clippings
- Straw & hay
- Ashes from wood
- Paper or lumpwood charcoal
- Woody clippings
- Cotton threads
- String (made from natural fibres)
- Tumble dryer lint (from natural fibre clothes)
- Old natural fibre clothes (e.g. wool)
- Vacuum bag contents
- Tissues, paper towels & napkins
- Shredded confidential documents
- Corn cobs & stalks
- Pine needles & cones
For a full guide on how to compost at home and for advice on how to set up your composter and make the best compost, click below.
Residents from across the Liverpool City Region can purchase a wide range of Home Compost bins and accessories at competitive prices too.
Buy a compost bin for yourself or even buy one for a friend or family member – they make a great present for someone who is looking to cut waste, improve their garden or help the environment.
WASTE CAN WAIT! Making the most of your food
These are challenging times we’re currently living through, especially when it comes to household food management. We don’t know if we’re buying too much or not enough. Can we use leftovers? What is the best way to stock a fridge?
However, thinking positively we can use this as an opportunity to reacquaint ourselves with some skills we may have lost in the hustle and bustle of modern life and do more with the food we have.
Now more than ever we all need to make sure we aren’t wasting any food – whether that’s buying or cooking too much, buying the wrong thing, or storing food incorrectly.
So, what can you do to reduce the amount of food you throw away and use more of what you’ve got? Whether you’re going to a supermarket or you’re shopping online follow the tips below to save food and almost certainly save money…
- Write a shopping list! The most obvious but best one of all. Check what is in the cupboard, fridge and freezer before shopping and write out what you need.
- Plan your meals in advance. Breakfast, dinner, tea – know what you need before you buy. You could even write it out and stick in on the fridge door!
- Check the dates on food regularly and use foods with the shortest date first.
- Smaller packs of bread (which still have the same size slices) are great if you’re not going to eat a big loaf before it goes off. If you do buy a big loaf why not freeze half and toast straight from frozen?
- Freeze milk – you need never pour milk down the sink again. When it’s coming up to its use-by date, and definitely still smells fresh, simply put it in the freezer. Defrost fully in the fridge and use within 5–7 days. You could even freeze it in an ice cube tray.
- Simple but a classic – measure portion sizes to help avoid cooking or serving too much food.
- Be creative with using up leftovers – most will keep for two days in the fridge if they are well wrapped (apart from rice).
- Speaking of leftover rice – rinse it with cold water and tip it into a large shallow container. Cool it as quickly as possible (ideally within an hour) and it will keep in the fridge for up to a day. Make sure your rice is piping hot when you reheat it – and then enjoy.
- Cook once, eat twice. There might be time when you’ve cooked too much food. A great way to keep it out of the bin is to create single portions in tupperware and freeze them for later. You, your partner and your family will always have a healthy meal to reheat when cooking seems like a chore.
- Keep your foods in the right parts of the fridge – this prevents cross-contamination (and keeps them good for longer). In a nutshell, keep ready-to-eat food on the top shelves and fruit and veg in the bottom drawers. Wrap or cover open items and put raw meat, poultry and fish in sealed containers to avoid keep raw away from cooked foods.
- To extend the life of food beyond its date, freeze it before the date and defrost and use within 24 hours.
- When you get your food home, keep it in its original packaging and follow on pack instructions to keep food at its best. If you buy your fruit and veg loose they can also last longer if stored properly in a bag that is lightly tied in the fridge.
- Re-sealable packs for cheese prevent it drying out, particularly important in the fridge. If your cheese of choice doesn’t have a re-sealable pack, make sure you wrap it well in cling film, foil or in a plastic tub
We hope our baker’s dozen of tips helps you manage your household food better. Find out more information and tips, advice and recipes for leftovers and to help waste less food below: