East Renfrewshire Council in Scotland will be one of the first Scottish councils to pilot food waste kerbside collections. The council will invite 6,000 household to take part in the 12 month trial across Merrylee, Carolside, Kirkhill, Auchenback in Barrhead and Neilston.
Over £800 million worth of food is thrown out by Scottish consumers each year, which equals nearly £370 a year per home. The Scottish Government has set targets for local councils to reduce refuse sent to landfill. By 2010 they must reduce it to 75% of 1995 levels, 2013 to 50% and by 2020 to 35%.
Environment convener councillor Eddie Phillips said: If we go over those levels we will be charged stiff penalty fees. We need to reduce our reliance on landfilling waste and by undertaking this trial food waste collection over 500 tonnes of household waste could be diverted from landfill and it will make people think about how much food they are wasting.
If we cut back our current levels of food waste by half we would prevent 1.4 million tonnes of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere.
Each household taking part in the trials will be provided with a seven litre kitchen caddy and a supply of compostable bags to go inside them.
All food waste including scrapings from dinner plates, old meat bones and fish skins, cooked and uncooked waste and dairy products should go into the bags. Fruit and vegetables may be added but householders are being urged to carry on putting this in home compost bins where possible.
Last year the council sent 24,427 tonnes of biodegradable waste to landfill.