UK Parliament Calls for Mandatory Food Waste Collection


Image credit: Watt_Dabney/Flickr

Food waste in the United Kingdom is a major problem, amounting to 5.3 million tonnes and an estimated ₤12 billion annually.

It's a problem big enough that a Parliamentary committee has recommended a serious plan to address it: initiating mandatory food waste pickups and banning such organic materials in the landfill.Such a landfill ban is already under consideration for 2020, but a recent report from the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Efra) committee recommends the slightly more aggressive date of 2015.

Committee Chairman Michael Jack explained:

We take the view, throughout the whole report, that waste is actually a resource...food waste has got two key opportunities to be used—either in energy from waste and the other is to home compost...we should stop throwing it away into landfill when we have these two alternatives.

In addition to home composting incentives, the committee suggests commercial and institutional food waste should be collected for use in local composting schemes or converted into energy.

More detailed reporting, to be required of businesses, and strict benchmarks for industrial and commercial waste are also needed, according to the report.

The ultimate goal, the committee reiterated, is to curb the massive amounts of waste heading to the UK's landfills each year. Banning food waste, they argue, would eliminate the amount of waste contributed by households by 10 percent.

Read more about food waste:
The British Throw Away $20 Billion Worth of Food a Year: That's a Lot of Crumpets
More than £12 Billion in Food Waste Goes in the Garbage Every Year in U.K.
Food Waste Revealed: From Farm to Store to Kitchen (Photos)
Read more about composting:
Organic Gardening: Composting
Does it Matter if I Compost?
How to Cure a Stinky Compost System
Who Needs a Mandate to Compost? Be Your Own San Francisco

Tags: Composting | Waste

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