In a bid to help city businesses divert waste away from landfill and promote better waste management, Doncaster food waste recycler, ReFood, has joined the Manchester Food Board.
The partnership follows the opening of ReFood’s anaerobic digestion plant in Widnes back in 2014. The facility takes food waste from across the North West, including food that’s still packaged, and turns it into renewable energy and bio-fertiliser.
The Manchester Food Board is a cross sector partnership of public, private and third sector organisations in Manchester who come together to harness the collective energy of the food sector in the City.
Chaired by Councillor Rosa Battle, Executive Member for the Environment with Manchester City Council, the board works with partners to provide a strong voice and leadership on the food agenda in Manchester, whilst working on range of commitments to improve health and create a more environmentally sustainable City.
Trudi Derbyshire, Regional Sales Manager for the North West at ReFood, said: “Every year as a nation, we send millions of tonnes of food waste to landfill, unnecessarily. Not only is it environmentally harmful, but it’s also increasingly expensive. For food-intensive businesses, Small and Medium sized Enterprises (SMEs) in particular, this can be a real problem.
“The capacity of our Widnes site alone is 120,000tonnes, processing food waste 24/7, 365 days a year, presenting a truly sustainable closed-loop alternative to landfill.”
Councillor Rosa Battle, Chair of the Manchester Food Board, added: “Our commitment to ensure a sustainable future for Manchester is designed to improve the physical, mental and social well-being of Manchester residents. Working with a range of partners and communities across the region, we are determined to make local food better, healthier and more accessible. Reducing avoidable food waste, to ensure that surplus food can be rightly diverted to those in need, is a vital part of this strategy.”
ReFood’s Widnes processing plant was inaugurated in summer 2014 and is capable of generating 1,800m3 biomethane gas per hour.
The plant represents a £20 million investment in the region and has already processed hundreds of thousands of tonnes of food waste since inauguration. ReFood collects from a 50 mile radius, stretching across the North West and into surrounding areas.