Composting capacity receives boost

Funding from the organisation which advises government on waste issues has provided a boost to composting in the Midlands and the North.

WRAP (the Waste & Resources Action Programme) has picked up the bill for the expansion of a composting site owned by Vital Earth in Derbyshire and a second run by JM Clarke & Son in Leicestershire.

The funding comes from WRAP’s organic capital support programme, now in its third round, and will increase the composting capacity at the town sites by around 50,000 tonnes.

An in-vessel facility has been built on a disused airfield for the Derbyshire project, with WRAP funding £507,000 of the £2.4 million total.

Vital Earth is using its own in-vessel process to compost kitchen and garden waste collected by Derby City Council and other local authorities in the area, which it plans to market as soil conditioning and growing compost.

The new facility is expected to produce around 40,000 tonnes of compost a year, bringing the total in-vessel capacity supported by WRAP’s organic capital support programme to 120,000 tonnes.

The smaller Leicestershire project, with WRAP footing the bill for just over a quarter of the £405,000 price tag, will include a new composting plant and the construction of concrete pads and walls, doubling the site’s processing capacity.

The expanded facility, expected to be commissioned this month, will enable Clarke’s to take more garden waste from Kettering and Corby district councils. Furthermore, the company will be seeking certification to the PAS 100:2005 specification and will initially supply certified compost to the agricultural market.

Richard Swannell, WRAP’s director of market development of organics, said: “We are delighted to be supporting these two projects, which together represent a significant step towards meeting our challenging target of increasing the UK’s processing capacity for biodegradable municipal waste by 450,000 tonnes per annum by March 2008.”

Sam Bond

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