Biffa Waste Services has opened the doors on a new £3 million in-vessel composting plant near Derby. The new facility has the capacity to convert 24,000 tonnes of kitchen waste into compost every year. The Waste & Resources Action Programme (WRAP) has supported Biffa build the facility with a £560,000 grant. This waste will come from homes in East Staffordshire Borough Council, South Derbyshire District Council and Lichfield District Council, which have recently set up kitchen waste recycling collections for their residents. With an estimated seven million tonnes of food waste produced by UK householders going to landfill each year, local authorities are keen to find alternative methods in diverting this waste. In-vessel composting processes waste within large sealed concrete containers where airflow, moisture content and temperature can be monitored and controlled. This helps to create the biological process which breaks the waste down into compost. WRAP supply programme manager Louise Hollingworth said: The in-vessel system will provide a significant increase in capacity for processing food waste in Derbyshire area, enabling authorities to expand the range of recyclables collected from households and producing a high quality soil conditioner. Biffa composting manager David Morgan said: The process takes just six weeks to turn waste into a reusable soil conditioning compost that will be used within the landscaping sector. This will help three local authorities meet their statutory recycling targets by providing the means to recover waste that has until now been difficult to recycle.