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More and more of us are recycling food

Your food is at its best when it’s on your plate, ready to be enjoyed. It’s perfect in your fridge, ready to be used, or stored in the freezer for another time. Love Food Hate Waste have some great tips for making the most of your food. Most of us still end up with some food waste however, including the things you can never eat like bones or coffee grounds. More and more people in Buckinghamshire are giving their food a second life by recycling it.

Why recycle food?

When recycled, food waste can be used to generate electricity to help power homes and the local community. It also produces fertiliser which can be used in farming.
It costs more than £400,000 to dispose of food waste in Buckinghamshire each year. Recycling it could not only generate enough electricity to power 21 typical schools for a year, it also saves the costs of waste collections across the county.

Check the information below to ensure you are recycling everything you can. Make a note of what you can't recycle too - that's just as important!

Which items of food can be recycled

Yes please

  • All uneaten food and plate scrapings
  • Tea bags and coffee grounds
  • Out of date or mouldy food
  • Raw and cooked meat, including bones
  • Raw and cooked fish, including bones
  • Dairy products such as cheese
  • Eggs and egg shells
  • Baked good such as bread, cakes and pastries
  • Rice, pasta, beans
  • Fruit and vegetables including raw and cooked vegetables and peelings
  • Pet food

No thanks

  • Non-food products including nappies
  • Packaging of any kind
  • Liquids such as milk - these may leak causing spillages when transporting food
  • Any material that is not food waste

Want to get started?

If you want to join the thousands of homes in Buckinghamshire recycling their food you just need a suitable container to use as a kitchen caddy, and an outdoor
food recycling bin. You can contact the council to ask for some food recycling caddies to get started and you can order a years worth of caddy liners for just £4 here.

This leaflet gives you everything you need to know to get started.

What happens to food waste after it's collected?

The food that is collected for recycling taken to facilities in Buckinghamshire to be turned into energy to power our homes and also a high quality fertiliser for use on agricultural land.
The recycling process for food is called anaerobic digestion. It uses micro-organisms to break down food waste in the absence of oxygen, inside an enclosed system. As it breaks down it gives off methane, which is collected and converted into biogas and used to generate electricity. It also creates a nutrient-rich digestate that can be used as a fertiliser for agriculture and in land regeneration. Find out more about the process here. 

Diagram of Anaerobic Digection process