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Mid Sussex District Council to trial food waste collections

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Mid Sussex District Council in the UK will trial kerbside food waste collections next year and send the waste to an anaerobic digestion facility.

On 29 November, the Council’s cabinet agreed to proceed with the trial in partnership with West Sussex County Council, which includes weekly food waste and absorbent hygiene product collections.

The trial will help the Council to gather important data and customer feedback, which can be used to ‘fine-tune’ a new collection system. Establishing the most appropriate frequency of collections, the size of bins and how to effectively meet the needs of residents will all be important when it comes to planning future changes to waste and recycling services.

“Our residents already do a fantastic job of recycling their waste but if we can collect food waste as well, it will dramatically increase recycling rates and reduce general waste,” said Councillor Jonathan Ash-Edwards, leader of Mid Sussex District Council.

Councillor John Belsey, MSDC Cabinet Member for Environment and Service Delivery, added: “Just over 40% by weight of the average household waste bin in Mid Sussex is food waste, and throwing all that food away has a hugely negative impact on the environment. Kerbside food waste collections make it simple and convenient for residents to recycle that waste into something useful.

“West Sussex County Council is supportive of our trial and is providing temporary arrangements for the disposal of food waste until a permanent facility is established. The food waste will be taken to a specialist facility and placed in an anaerobic digester, which uses the gas that is produced when the food breaks down to generate energy and turns the leftover material into a soil fertiliser.”

With the help of residents, the Council hopes that introducing kerbside food waste collections, together with other recycling initiatives, will help increase recycling levels in Mid Sussex and reach over 65% by 2035.