Become a composting champion and recycle your food waste at home

Every year, British households throw away approximately 7million tonnes of food waste and lots of this ends up in landfill, where it decomposes and produces harmful gases and liquids.

This is why Southend-on-Sea Borough Council and its waste and recycling contractor, Veolia - the UK’s leading environmental solutions company – want residents to recycle their food waste to reduce this and at the same time save money.

Veolia collects the blue food waste bins weekly in split-bodied vehicles which allow black sacks and food waste to be collected separately. The food is sent to an Anaerobic Digestion plant to be used to produce fertiliser and generate electricity for the National Grid. You can now discover the journey of your food waste and how Veolia recycles it in a new video available on the Council’s website. 

If you have enough space, you can also compost your garden waste and some of your food waste at home. Home composting can be tricky, so Veolia is offering training for composting champions who will learn the basics of how to design or choose a bin, what to put in the compost and how it all works.

The composting champions will also have the opportunity to visit a composting site and learn how to spread the word in their community. The first training day takes place on Thursday 26 September. If you are interested, please contact Veolia recycling officers by emailing [email protected]  

Cllr Carole Mulroney, cabinet member for environment and planning, said: “The council works with Veolia to ensure we are increasing the amount of food waste being recycled locally. But we need to do more, much more. 

“Many people don’t know the issues surrounding food waste, and the harmful gases it produces which have a major impact on the environment, so we must act now to prevent this.

“Food waste recycling has increased, and we now want to ensure that residents have all the information they need to allow them to recycle their food waste, including through composting it themselves, and we want members of the public to register their interest in becoming a composting champion.”

Keith McGurk, Regional Director for Veolia, said “Residents are doing a great job of recycling their materials and we want to thank them for it. By promoting the food waste services, we’d like to increase the number of residents who recycle in Southend.

“For residents who would prefer to compost at home, we are also launching a composting champion scheme. We will offer training to residents who’d like to start composting at home and help spread the word within their community.” 

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