Food leftovers could be collected from doorsteps in Northumberland

Food waste collections could be on their way to Northumberland, county bosses have hinted.

By James Harrison
Tuesday, 16th November 2021, 1:36 pm
Food waste could soon be collected from doorsteps as part of the county council's recycling strategy.

A glass recycling collection service has been under trial for about a year now, and the scheme is about to be extended to a further 800 properties.

But now families have been told to expect further additions to their local authority services, with measures to deal with leftovers next in the queue.

“[The glass collections trial gave] us very robust data,” said John Riddle, cabinet member for local services at Northumberland County Council (NCC).

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“The government’s [environment] bill is passing through at the moment about waste and we may well be wanting to do a trial on food waste in the coming year.

“That is something coming down the line for us [from the government] and to have robust data is essential.”

The ongoing kerbside glass collections pilot was rolled out to about 4,000 properties last year, with a further 800 set to be signed up by the end of the year.

However, at the moment, the test scheme only covers selected areas in Morpeth, Bedlington, Hexham and Alnwick.

This month, county bosses agreed to spend £31,000 keeping the pick-ups running until the end of the 2021/22 financial year, in April, and cover the cost of 800 new 140-litre wheelie bins.

A further £43,000 is due to be set aside to keep the service running through 2022/23.

But no decision has yet been made on when it is likely to be extended to more household, with any expansion likely to be dependent on news of future government funding.

Glen Sanderson, leader of NCC said: “We will be looking at it on an area by area basis.

“It’s very important that we wait to do anything further until the government publishes the environment bill, because that will be about requesting councils to carry out recycling of a number of parts of household waste.

“And as well as that, we may be needing to look at food waste next.

“We will wait until the government talks to us more about what they want us to do and I think they will be impressed by our glass trial. We will wait for the time being, but I’m told it shouldn’t be many months until the environment bill is published.”