Long-term future of Norwich food waste collections in doubt - unless more people start recycling their leftovers

File photo dated 20/05/12 of out of date and unopened food from a domestic household thrown away in a dustbin as Tesco, the UK's biggest supermarket, is launching a campaign to tackle breathtaking amounts of food waste which it says costs households £700 a year. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday May 20, 2013. See PA story CITY Tesco. Photo credit should read: Nick Ansell/PA Wire File photo dated 20/05/12 of out of date and unopened food from a domestic household thrown away in a dustbin as Tesco, the UK's biggest supermarket, is launching a campaign to tackle breathtaking amounts of food waste which it says costs households £700 a year. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday May 20, 2013. See PA story CITY Tesco. Photo credit should read: Nick Ansell/PA Wire

Monday, February 10, 2014
2:32 PM

The long-term future of Norwich food waste collections could be under threat - unless more people start taking part in the scheme, council officers have revealed.

To send a link to this page to a friend, you must be logged in.

Norwich City Council launched a food waste collection service in 2010, to try to cut the amount of leftovers which end up in landfill, with caddies issued to homes for people to put food into.

Since 2005, the council has gone from being the largest producer of household waste in the county, to being the best performer.

But, with less than a third of the city’s households taking part in the weekly food waste scheme, council officers have cast a question mark over the future of the collections, saying the service is “underperforming”.

But, in a report which went before members of the controlling Labour cabinet, officers raised concerns over the food waste collection scheme.

They said: “Both the participation rates and the tonnage collected are very low, such that the long-term viability of the service could be called into question.

“Significant interventions are required in order to improve this service, so as to reduce the amount of food waste that is land-filled and provide tangible benefits to residents and the council.”

In 2012, the city council established a team to knock on doors, which showed in some parts of the city two thirds of people put their food waste out for collection, but in other areas it was fewer than 3pc of homes.

Many people said they did not put their food waste out because the council does not provide free caddy liners. The council failed in a bid Department of Communities and Local Government to get money to pay for free liners, but is still exploring that possibility.

Council officers will also continue to knock on doors to encourage people to take part in the scheme.

A spokesperson for Norwich City Council said: “We are proud to have achieved the best household recycling rates in the county and are now working to encourage more residents to get involved in our food waste collection scheme.

“Once they make use of the service, most residents actually see a reduction in the food waste they generate since they start to shop more mindfully and therefore have less to throw away, which saves money, too.

“We would like to thank everyone who already makes use of the scheme and remind residents that all food waste collected is diverted from landfill and goes on to a local processing plant for use as compost on farmland in the area.”

The council has set itself new targets to reduce the level of residual waste being produced by city households.

Each household currently produces an average of 426kg of residual waste each year, but the council wants to drive that down to 384kg by 2016 and 340kg by 2020.

The council hopes to increase its recycling rates when the new materials recycling facility in Costessey comes into operation in October, which will mean people can put more into their blue recycling bins,

If you no longer have a food caddy or have any queries about the scheme, visit www.norwich.gov.uk or call 0344 980 3333.

• What do you think of food waste collections? Write, giving full contact details, to Letters Editor, Prospect House, Rouen Road, Norwich NR1 1RE.

17 comments

  • I waste no food at all - at most, a single piece of fruit a month. I eat veg without peeling, etc. I really don't understand why people struggle so much - all it takes is a little planning. As a single man, I imagine it's easier for me - I never cook anything I won't eat. With things like cheese, I 'pre cut' it, put it in freezer, and then remove a few slices now and then. I have been eating from the same loaf of bread for about two months - a slice from the freezer now and then for breakfast. Wasting food is optional. And frankly, stupid. However, even if I did produce food waste, it would all just go in the general rubbish. Not interested in the green agenda - it's all just polishing silverware on the titanic. People need to learn to be a little more hardy, when the global society collapses in a few decades, and people are getting shot over a rare loaf of bread, those who worry about irrelevancies such as use by dates will be the first to fall.

    Report this comment

    dan

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • I waste no food at all - at most, a single piece of fruit a month. I eat veg without peeling, etc. I really don't understand why people struggle so much - all it takes is a little planning. As a single man, I imagine it's easier for me - I never cook anything I won't eat. With things like cheese, I 'pre cut' it, put it in freezer, and then remove a few slices now and then. I have been eating from the same loaf of bread for about two months - a slice from the freezer now and then for breakfast. Wasting food is optional. And frankly, stupid. However, even if I did produce food waste, it would all just go in the general rubbish. Not interested in the green agenda - it's all just polishing silverware on the titanic. People need to learn to be a little more hardy, when the global society collapses in a few decades, and people are getting shot over a rare loaf of bread, those who worry about irrelevancies such as use by dates will be the first to fall.

    Report this comment

    dan

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • I waste no food at all - at most, a single piece of fruit a month. I eat veg without peeling, etc. I really don't understand why people struggle so much - all it takes is a little planning. As a single man, I imagine it's easier for me - I never cook anything I won't eat. With things like cheese, I 'pre cut' it, put it in freezer, and then remove a few slices now and then. I have been eating from the same loaf of bread for about two months - a slice from the freezer now and then for breakfast. Wasting food is optional. And frankly, stupid. However, even if I did produce food waste, it would all just go in the general rubbish. Not interested in the green agenda - it's all just polishing silverware on the titanic. People need to learn to be a little more hardy, when the global society collapses in a few decades, and people are getting shot over a rare loaf of bread, those who worry about irrelevancies such as use by dates will be the first to fall.

    Report this comment

    dan

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • Do they have stats to show people are throwing food waste in the main bin instead? If so, fair comment, but if not then surely people are just reducing waste which can only be a good thing. I have always felt very suspicious of the large figures bandied around for the average value of wasted food each month per household. Do people know they can wrap the food waste in newspaper? It doesn't have to be the degradable bags, which run at about 10p each.

    Report this comment

    littlesharpie

    Monday, February 10, 2014

  • I waste no food at all - at most, a single piece of fruit a month. I eat veg without peeling, etc. I really don't understand why people struggle so much - all it takes is a little planning. As a single man, I imagine it's easier for me - I never cook anything I won't eat. With things like cheese, I 'pre cut' it, put it in freezer, and then remove a few slices now and then. I have been eating from the same loaf of bread for about two months - a slice from the freezer now and then for breakfast. Wasting food is optional. And frankly, stupid. However, even if I did produce food waste, it would all just go in the general rubbish. Not interested in the green agenda - it's all just polishing silverware on the titanic. People need to learn to be a little more hardy, when the global society collapses in a few decades, and people are getting shot over a rare loaf of bread, those who worry about irrelevancies such as use by dates will be the first to fall.

    Report this comment

    dan

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • I waste no food at all - at most, a single piece of fruit a month. I eat veg without peeling, etc. I really don't understand why people struggle so much - all it takes is a little planning. As a single man, I imagine it's easier for me - I never cook anything I won't eat. With things like cheese, I 'pre cut' it, put it in freezer, and then remove a few slices now and then. I have been eating from the same loaf of bread for about two months - a slice from the freezer now and then for breakfast. Wasting food is optional. And frankly, stupid. However, even if I did produce food waste, it would all just go in the general rubbish. Not interested in the green agenda - it's all just polishing silverware on the titanic. People need to learn to be a little more hardy, when the global society collapses in a few decades, and people are getting shot over a rare loaf of bread, those who worry about irrelevancies such as use by dates will be the first to fall.

    Report this comment

    dan

    Wednesday, February 12, 2014

  • Having read the article I feel slightly sad at the possible loss of this wonderful service,I would love to compost but unfortunately having tried this 34 years ago created a vermin problem on my property and when this new scheme was announced was so pleased and must say a brilliant 1 it is.The weekly service is amazing although I can agree the bags have jumped up in price but so has everything!,another observation for us is the weight of the rubbish bags we do throw out is very minimal and we are careful with our food consumption we really only throw away peelings,and anything the birds cannot eat as we seem to have plenty of seagulls in our neighbourhood there isn`t much thrown away at all but I am very grateful for the service and sincerely hope we do not loose it.I would like to think Norwich City Council will manage to arrange something regarding free liners therefore making the system more viable,if it`s a case of use it or loose it lets spread the word and keep this system rolling.

    Report this comment

    NR1`EY

    Tuesday, February 11, 2014

  • I used it for 12months, however the bin man would throw the collection bin on the floor in disregard so the lid was oftern off and residue leaked onto the pavemnt the smell was so unpleasent and the bin became so full of maggorts I had to bin the food bin in the black bin tied up into plastic bags as was so minging. i have no where to wash such a bin and the fact the binmen couldnt just put it back on the floor upright mad this service useless

    Report this comment

    curlysaysgo

    Monday, February 10, 2014

  • this so called waste is somebody elses compost, the food collection service should be able to adjust and realise that many people have compost bins and gardens, this is good news, but on the other hand there are some Apartment blocks and buildings who might want a service. Flexibility is the key, as for extra liners, why create extra waste? does a food waste bin have to be clean and what stops us to clen rinse it? If there is no flexibility in the service then it has been procured under false pretences. With an increasing realisation of green issues in Norwich it was always on the cards that colections would go down and recylingcomposting would go up. That one third of people rather live it up and damn the next generations, is most likely down to the social disconnect the council and its inactivists have fostered, down to the confused messages that have come out of our local councils.

    Report this comment

    ingo wagenknecht

    Monday, February 10, 2014

  • Sorry just to correct for some reason no comer appeared in my earlier post not 34 years ago 3 to 4 and another thought on this is with 2 more new supermarkets planned for Hall road in Norwich there will be 4 very large inner city SM`S all far too close to city estates make a condition to their trading to subsidise the food waste collection as they are the big cause of this with their stupid offers forcing people on the bread line to buy unnecessary food stuff.Also I have noticed SM`S seem to be buying their food stuffs with shorter shelf lifes now(is this older stock being sold cheaply to the SM`s to maximise the SM`s profits),I have noticed this a lot at 1 local SM since midlate last year,when they put this things on "offer" hard pressed households just grab these things like their lives depend on it and not until they get home do they realise and scoff it or bin it earlier than expected and this to me is clever psychological marketing from these big SM`s so make them pay to keep our food waste collection running as they are the 1`s with massive profits from their cleverly engineered marketing

    Report this comment

    NR1`EY

    Tuesday, February 11, 2014

  • The amount of food thrown away by families is vastly overestimated . Many people produce very little . The smaller the household , the less waste .

    Report this comment

    dragonfly

    Monday, February 10, 2014

  • We produce very little food waste, but did try to use this service. However we gave up as we did not want waste food sitting around for weeks due to the reliability of the service being very poor.

    Report this comment

    el84

    Tuesday, February 11, 2014

  • Maybe some households do not have food waste. Not all households can afford to buy food that will be wasted.

    Report this comment

    JEN

    Monday, February 10, 2014

  • I agree with JEN some people can shop sensibly so there is little or no waste.

    Report this comment

    jennifer jane

    Monday, February 10, 2014

  • Maybe there should be more focus on how Food, the main Supermarkets throw away each day !

    Report this comment

    che bramley

    Monday, February 10, 2014

  • Unless the people of Norwich survive totally on packaged processed foods, or have their own compost bins, there would normally be vegetable peelings. Every little helps avoid the cost of going to landfill, unless of course the waste is needed to keep demand artificially high for an incinerator? Funny how the EDP did not find planning permission being granted for an AD plant near Holt to take 30,000 tpa out of the waste stream worthy of a mention, I would have thought it would have deserved at least a line or two, particularly as NCC recommended refusal.

    Report this comment

    Honest John

    Monday, February 10, 2014

  • Food waste? What's that? I cook enough for us to eat and if there is anything left over it goes to a variety of livestock. Planning everyone. Get organised. Your grandparents wouldn't have wasted a scrap of food.

    Report this comment

    alecto

    Tuesday, February 11, 2014

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Homes24
Jobs24
Drive24
LocalSearch24
MyDate24
MyPhotos24
FamilyNotices24
Weddingsite

loading...

Classifieds, browse or search them online now

The Canary magazine
Order your copy of The Canary magazine

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT