Garden Centre Retail caught up with Louise Murphy, Sales & Logistics Executive at ReFood UK Limited, a food waste management service which has recently worked with Cheshire-based Gordale Garden and Home Centre to recycle the food waste from their café.
It’s estimated that 1.9 million tonnes of food are wasted by the food industry every year in the UK. 250,000 tonnes of the food that goes to waste each year is still edible.
ReFood aims to divert food waste from landfill by offering businesses a cost-effective and environmentally-friendly specialised food waste recycling services.
Recycling food waste
“We have a total of three plants in operation across the UK, together with our own fleet of specialist food waste collection trucks and service depots. We are able to offer nationwide coverage” says Louise.
“Set up is straight-forward and hassle free. We take the time to understand your needs as a business in order to become your trusted food waste recycling partner.
“Once a solution has been agreed, we then provide you with the recycling bins you need for your food waste. We collect them to a schedule tailored to your requirements, and on collection, all bins are replaced by clean, sanitised ones to ensure that bio-security is maintained throughout the recycling process.
“This means no odours, costly bin liners and no need for you to clean and maintain your bins.”
The recycling process
ReFood uses a process called Anaerobic Digestion (AD) to recycle food waste materials. AD is a natural process that biologically breaks down organic material to generate biogas. This process diverts waste material from landfill and uses it to create renewable energy instead.
“The biogas we generate is treated prior to being pumped directly into the National Grid. At a single plant, we currently produce enough gas to power 12,600 homes a year.
“Once all the waste material is fully digested, we are also left with a liquid, which we turn into high quality fertiliser that is currently used in farming and agriculture.”
Taking food waste away from landfill
In addition to offering a greener and safer alternative to landfill, there are commercial benefits associated with recycling food waste. Recycling waste can save you up to 50%* on food waste disposal costs against landfill.
“Recycling this waste allows you to do more than just choose a sustainable alternative to landfill. It delivers the environmental benefits of creating renewable energy, as well as producing bio-fertiliser” explains Louise.
If you’re interested in finding out more about ReFood and how the company can help you, call 0800 0113 214 or visit www.refood.co.uk.
*based on April 2018 landfill rate vs volume