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How to present food waste to Anaerobic Digestion (AD) facilities

Improving the quality of the food waste collection to prevent contamination with plastic packaging, glass and metal.

As food waste is processed to produce fertiliser (as well as energy) that will be utilised on agricultural land it is imperative that the quality of the food waste that is put out for collection is as free from unwanted material such as plastic packaging, glass and metal as possible. This will help to ensure that the subsequent fertiliser that is then used to support further food production, is itself, as clean as possible from these unwanted materials also.

Simple instructions

Follow food waste collection service provider instructions on how to present food waste for collection.

  1. Where possible don’t use bags to collect food waste, however if bags must be used:
    • Clear sacks (no larger than 60 -80 litres) should be used for food waste collection. Black bin bags should only be used for general waste.
    • Use only a single bag to collect food waste, avoid double or triple bagging material as this causes problems at the food waste treatment facility.
  2. Do not contaminate food waste with non-food waste items, such as paper napkins, plastic packaging, cutlery or glass.
  3. Any food waste packaging should be removed. Primary packaging (i.e. the immediate packaging layer around the product) may only be retained with the approval of your food waste collection agent.
  4. Your waste contractor may refuse to uplift food waste (or charge extra) if contaminated by other materials.
  5. Food waste containers should be clearly labelled and easily accessible for staff.All staff should be trained to use internal and external waste segregation systems effectively.


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