WRAP’s Food Waste Collection guide provides local authorities with information on the collection of household food waste as a way of diverting this material from landfill or other residual waste treatment. It highlights issues to consider when planning and implementing a new food waste collection service.
The guide also provides advice to local authorities with existing weekly separate food waste collections on how to increase participation and capture through effective service design and communication activities.
Director of WRAP, Dr Richard Swannell – “What I find hardest to stomach about this is that there’s more than enough food to feed everyone, if only we were smarter in how we use it”
In 2013/14 an estimated 594,000 tonnes of household food waste was collected for recycling, however it only represents a fraction of the estimated 4.6m tonnes of household food waste collected by local authorities.
Across the UK, around 13.8m households receive a food waste collection. According to WRAP’s 2015 3Rs Tracking Survey, the main reason that people do not use the food waste collection service is that they have not received any information about how to use it (17% of non-users gave this as the main reason).
The other main reasons given also highlight the lack of knowledge non-users have about food waste collections, citing it would be too “messy or smelly” (14%) and “I don’t produce enough food waste to bother” (14%).
WRAP has previously drawn attention to the barriers that are associated with food waste recycling in the 2014 Barriers to Recycling Report, which outlined householders’ lack of understanding of how to use a food waste collection and perceived negative perceptions around hygiene.
To help overcome these barriers, WRAP has refreshed the existing Recycle Now food waste communication materials to create a suite of around 75 new resources. They have been consumer tested to resonate with householders and encourage participation and more capture.
Director of WRAP, Dr Richard Swannell gave a speech at Westminster Forum, The Caledonian Club in London this week, where he reiterated that the fight against food waste is only half done.
He said that great strides have been made, but “we must also recognise that it’s a job half done – literally, as I want us to halve food waste…
“What I find hardest to stomach about this is that there’s more than enough food to feed everyone, if only we were smarter in how we use it.”
Dr Swannel said that this is going to be difficult because “it needs many actors to change… But I believe it’s achievable if we come together and all play our part – a team effort.”
Communication materials are free to download from the WRAP Resource Library and can be amended to reflect local services.
The Food Waste Collection guide is available to download from the WRAP website