Nordic Recycling has entered liquidation, stopping operations at its 100,000-tonne a year Port of Tilbury MRF, its parent company Suez UK has confirmed.
Sita UK , as it was known then, bought Nordic last year with the intention of expanding its operations in the south of England.
But a spokesperson for Suez said directors of Nordic began putting the company into an insolvency process on 24 July due to poor trading conditions.
Thurrock Council has expressed its disappointment at the site’s closure, which curtails a seven-year contract due to end in April 2017. It means the council will have to pay £40 a tonne more to process its mixed dry recycling.
The council had been paying £14.52 a tonne at the plant (pictured) but will now be charged a £55 rate at Bywaters’ MRF in Bow for the next 18 months.
A Suez spokesperson said: “On Friday the directors of Nordic Recycling Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of Sita, reluctantly took steps to put the company into an insolvency process as a result of poor trading conditions.
“They are now working with an insolvency practitioner to bring about an orderly shutdown of the company, and will comment further in due course.”
Sita had offered Thurrock the option of using its Barking site at £61 a tonne, according to the council.
The council said the company had told it in June that it was consulting with its workforce on the future operation of the Tilbury site.
The company also told the local authority it had directed all other waste away from the site because Thurrock was contaminating all material, which the council said it made steps to rectify.
Council portfolio holder for environment Gerard Rice said: “We believe Sita was looking for excuses to close its Tilbury site but has been gradually lowering its offer to use Barking.
“We are looking at what we can do legally to recoup the difference between the rate we were paying and the £55 we are paying from this Monday.
“Part of the Bywaters deal is that it accepts the same commingled one-bin recycling as Tilbury, so our residents do not have to learn a new system.”
Bywaters associate director Craig Gregory said: “We are very excited to be working in partnership with Thurrock Council in driving down contaminated materials and increasing their recycling volumes, ensuring they achieve a long-term sustainable solution for their residents.
“While the industry faces many challenges, it is refreshing to be working with a like-minded partner.”
The council said it has had to cancel its pilot kerbside textile recycling scheme because the new facility cannot cope with this at short notice.
Suez said its other operations at Port of Tilbury, including a refuse-derived fuel plant, remain unaffected.