WRAP has announced a £500,000 fund to encourage best practice in commercial food waste collections from businesses and the public sector.
The money, which will be issued over the next three years, will be used to support demonstration projects in England whereby collected food waste is recovered either through anaerobic digestion or in-vessel composting.
The intention, according to WRAP, is to improve the provision of recycling services to businesses, particularly to SMEs. Collection schemes eligible for the fund are those servicing commercial businesses such as restaurants, hotels and catering firms, and public sector organisations including council offices.
A collection tonnage target will be agreed for each successful applicant over a two-year period and WRAP will work with successful recipients to provide advice on service development and implementation as required.
In announcing the initiative, Defra’s Recycling Minister Lord Taylor said: “This new fund will give businesses and community groups a better opportunity to find ways that actually work for them to keep food out of landfill.
“People want to do the right thing, and we know that a one-size-fits-all approach doesn’t work for business waste collection. We need to see innovative solutions put forward that will help set businesses on the path to a zero-waste economy.”
According to WRAP’s head of collections & quality, Linda Crichton, there has been “a good level of interest expressed during the development of this fund”. She added: “Applications will be assessed against published criteria, and must demonstrate good practice approaches to collecting business food waste, as well as outlining ways of both reducing service costs and maximising food waste recycling.”
The maximum grant issued per applicant will be £100,000 and this can be used towards capital items such as vehicles, collection bins and caddies, or for labour and overheads costs.