Is your household on the food waste trial?

Swindon is about to become the first town in Wiltshire to collect food waste for recycling and the areas taking part in trialling the service have now been named.

Published: Wednesday, 17th July 2019

Last month the Council announced that selected areas of the Borough would be receiving the separate weekly collection of food waste following their Waste Strategy consultation last year. Feedback from residents showed an overwhelming demand for a food waste collection in Swindon, with over 70 per cent of respondents requesting the service.  

This is part of the Council’s wider ambitions to increase recycling and reduce waste across the borough to protect the environment, both here as well as nationally and internationally.

From September 2019, approximately 11,000 households will trial the new service on a 26-week trial basis to test collection methods. The Council’s Cabinet will then decide on whether to roll out the collections to the rest of the borough.

Food waste bins, known as ‘caddies’, will be delivered to households on the trial routes from mid July 2019. If a resident lives in a house on the trial round they can expect to receive two caddies: a 5 litre indoor caddy and a 23 litre outdoor caddy. Residents who live in a flat or a communal occupancy will receive a 5 litre indoor caddy and a food waste bin will be added to their communal bin store.

Residents are asked to keep their caddies safe until the start of their collection at the beginning of September and they will be given all the information they need to make full use of the service.

The trial will follow bin collection routes not geographical areas, which means that not all households within a selected area will be part of the trial. The trial areas include parts of Middleleaze, Nine Elms, Wroughton, Broome Manor, Marlborough Road, Park South, Broad Street, Coleview, Highworth, Cheney Manor, Gorse Hill, Abbey Meads and Taw Hill. If a resident lives in one of these areas then they are encouraged to visit to check if their household is on a trial route. The trial routes have been selected to achieve the most accurate representation of the different demographics and housing types in Swindon.

During the trial period there is potential for Swindon to divert up to 200 tonnes of food waste to be recycled and composted rather than used as fuel or sent to landfill.

Food waste can produce large quantities of methane which is released into the environment as a harmful greenhouse gas if not recycled. When food waste is recycled the methane is converted into biogas to generate electricity, and the solid product is used as a fertiliser for agriculture and in land regeneration.

Councillor Maureen Penny, Swindon Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Highways and the Environment, said: “Trialling food waste collections is one of the key actions from the Waste Strategy we agreed last year which aims to protect our environment and make sure we can collect Swindon’s waste in a sustainable way.

“Food waste collections are carried out by many other councils up and down the country and can have a huge impact on hitting recycling targets set by national Government.”

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