Leftover mince and potatoes or spaghetti bolognaise could make the difference to recycling levels across South Ayrshire from next year.
If funding is approved, separate food waste collections will be phased in across the main towns in South Ayrshire from the middle of the year. Councillor John McDowall, Sustainability and Environment Portfolio Holder said: “The introduction of food waste collections across some 40,000 houses in South Ayrshire will result in over 3,181 tonnes of food waste being diverted from landfill each year. As well as increasing our recycling rate by an estimated 5% it will save on landfill tax and landfill tipping charges.
“We are well ahead of schedule with recycling food waste and will expand the system. We are keen to offer food waste collections to schools, canteens and some businesses during the roll-out phases.
“We know that people living in villages and small towns are also keen to recycle food waste, so we will introduce ways for residents to do this as soon as we can.
”It is a fact that in Scotland almost a fifth of the food we buy gets thrown away. This is an appalling statistic - we should never waste food and we should protect our environment.”
In May 2012 the Waste (Scotland) Regulations 2012 came into force. These impose a number of new requirements on local authorities and businesses with regard to how their waste is managed and dealt with. Included in this is a requirement that local authorities must from 1 January 2016 arrange for occupiers of every domestic property in urban areas to be provided with a receptacle enabling separate collection of food waste from the property.
The grant funding of £425,320 would meet the cost of three 7.5 tonne food waste collection vehicles and the cost of all kitchen caddies, kerbside boxes and a limited supply of caddy liners for 40,000 houses within South Ayrshire.
Initially the food waste collections will be introduced in the summer of 2013 and operate in Troon, Prestwick, Ayr, Maybole and Girvan.
Each household taking part in the new service will receive a 7.5 litre kitchen food waste caddy, a 23 litre kerbside container and a six month supply of caddy liners. The kitchen caddy will be of solid construction and can therefore be used with or without liners.