Finding an affordable collection - SME food waste recycling guidance

Food waste recycling for your business

Recycling your food waste is easier than you think!

Finding an affordable collection

Friska, Bristol

"We are happy that none of our food waste goes to landfill; this has helped us win the Best Business in the Bristol Green Business Awards as well as three stars from the Sustainable Restaurants Association."
Griff Holland, Manager

Background

A fast food and coffee bar operation serving high quality "feel good food" from four high street outlets in Bristol. Friska serves breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks five days a week as well as offering catering for events and parties. Approximately 300 meals are created by five chefs from a central kitchen which then also serves the other outlets.

Why we recycle food waste

It's part of the business ethos; the aim of our business is to be as sustainable as possible.

How it works

We have colour-coded, pedal operated floor standing bins in the kitchen lined with clear liners. The red bin is for food waste only, making it obvious to the chefs which they should use. There is an additional food waste bin in the servery area to capture tea and coffee grounds - an opening in the counter top leads to the food waste bin below making it easier for staff to dispose of food waste quickly.

Kitchen food waste bins are emptied by any member of the team once a day and are taken to a waste storage room to the rear of the kitchen. The clear bags are deposited into 240 litre wheeled bins which are then collected twice a week from the kerbside.

Making it affordable

Initially the food recycling collections we found were much more expensive than a general rubbish collection; but after shopping around we found a service that was affordable and the contractor now provides all of our waste collection services. Although marginally more expensive in terms of cost of collection per bin, we have made some savings on our waste management bill overall, including a reduction in the cost of bags used and improved food waste management awareness in our kitchens.

Practicalities

We were really pleased to find a cost–effective local alternative to sending food waste to landfill, but there was an issue to overcome when we first took part in the recycling scheme. The recycling collector could not accept our food waste in the liners we were using. I contacted them and they explained that they needed the food waste to be put in clear liners so that the collection crew could easily see that we were separating our food waste properly. Very soon everything was sorted I am now very happy with how things are working.