Free food waste caddy bags for Oxfordshire residents

Householders are being offered an early Christmas present to help them deal with the extra food waste expected to be generated over the festive period.

Oxfordshire libraries will be giving away free rolls of food waste caddy liners to residents from Wednesday 8 December.

Although all households are provided with food waste recycling collections by their district council, it is estimated that the food waste thrown away in general rubbish bins that could have been recycled costs Oxfordshire County Council more than £2 million extra a year in disposal costs.

Councillor Pete Sudbury, Oxfordshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Climate change and Environment, said: “After making sure edible food is not wasted in the first place, home composting or recycling food waste using the kerbside collection are the next best thing people can do to reduce the impact of waste disposal on the climate. That’s why we are giving away these caddy liners to make it easier for residents at a time when we know that food waste is likely to increase significantly.

“I would urge people to pop down to their local library and grab a roll while stocks last. Reducing the amount of food waste that ends up in general rubbish could save the council millions of pounds – money that would be better spent on other projects to improve people’s lives.”

Recycling food waste costs less than a quarter of the price of disposing of it with general rubbish. General rubbish in Oxfordshire is burnt to generate energy which already reduces greenhouse gas emissions compared to landfill, but recycling food waste doubles the climate change benefit. The recycling process generates green electricity and a fertiliser that is used on farmland across the county.

Each year the council already recycles nearly 25,000 tonnes of food waste – such as vegetable peel, bones, eggshells, plate scapings and used teabags – but it estimates that a similar amount wrongly ends up in general waste.

Residents are also being reminded that Oxfordshire’s seven household waste and recycling centres (HWRCs) will be closed on Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day, and will close at 3pm on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve. More information, including details of where to find HWRCs, is available at www.oxfordshire.gov.uk/recyclingcentres.

More information about how to reduce your food waste and recycle more this festive season – including links to the Love Food Hate Waste campaign, which contains money-saving tips, storage hints, and recipes to make the most of your leftovers – is available online or from the Oxfordshire Recycles’ Facebook and Twitter accounts.

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