Edinburgh gets £1.3m funding boost for food waste collections

The City of Edinburgh Council will receive almost £1.3m to support a phased roll-out of food waste collections to 140,000 households across the city this year.

This is the first funding from the Scottish Government’s £4m food waste programme through Zero Waste Scotland, which will help councils and businesses recycle food waste.

The permanent roll-out of food waste collections in the city follows the success of a trial kerbside food waste collection service which started in April to 20,000 homes, including 5,000 high-density properties such as flats.

The service has now extended to 15,000 more Edinburgh homes and a planned roll-out to provide the service to most Edinburgh properties will continue in coming years. Edinburgh is the first city to roll-out food waste collections to flatted properties in Scotland.

Commenting on the scheme, Scottish Environment Secretary, Richard Lochhead, said: “Edinburgh households produce around 40,000 tonnes of food waste each year. Reducing this should be our first priority, to ensure we make the most of our resources and ultimately save money – each household throws out £430 of unspoiled food each year.

“The rest is unavoidable food waste, like chicken bones and banana peels and, for this, recycling is by far the best alternative.”

Councillor Robert Aldridge, environment leader for the council, said: “In only four months, 20,000 households in Edinburgh have recycled over 100 tonnes of food waste. The pilot’s success shows that it is possible to recycle food waste even if you live in city centre flats and tenements.

“Having trialled a number of different on-street bins, we are confident that food waste can be collected hygienically.”

Maxine Perella

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