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Mitie

T: 03306780710  /  E: info@mitie.com

A renewable food waste solution for Avon Fire & Rescue


Overview

We are currently working alongside Avon Fire & Rescue delivering waste management services across 25 sites. Avon Fire & Rescue provide emergency and protection services to the communities of Bath and North East Somerset, Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire. They are committed to providing a safer place for people to live, work and visit across an area of 134,753 hectares and a population of over one million.

Avon Fire & Rescue also have nine Community Safety Centres (CSCs) which provide safety advice, internet access and meeting facilities free of charge to local groups. Their CSCs can be found at Bath, Bedminster, Patchway, Southmead, Weston-Super-Mare and Yate fire stations. They were initially looking for a trial service set up for food collections at one of their stations. The trial collection was implemented at Temple Fire Station (station 9) which was to last for a period of 16 weeks.

The solution

We guaranteed that all of the food waste collected would be recycled preventing any from ending up in landfill. When food waste is sent to landfill, not only does it release methane - a powerful green house gas - but the nutrient value is not captured. We have formed relationships with a number of local, licensed anaerobic digestion facilities throughout the UK to minimise how far collected waste has to travel.

Anaerobic digestion is a series of biological processes in which microorganisms break down biodegradable material in the absence of oxygen. One of the end products is biogas, which is combusted to generate electricity and heat, or can be processed into renewable natural gas and transportation fuels. Our relationships with these facilities provide the link between our customers who need food waste collected and anaerobic digestion plants that need the food waste to produce biogas.

We quoted Avon Fire & Rescue for a food waste collection service where a single 240 litre food waste bin would be emptied on a fortnightly basis. The Key Account Manager on the contract, Sara Culver, took the Avon Fire & Rescue team to GENeco in Avonmouth where the collected food waste would be disposed of. GENeco has a state of the art anaerobic digestion plant facility with de-packaging capability. Avon Fire & Rescue thoroughly enjoyed the visit as they were able to see first-hand the exact process in which their food waste would be recycled.

“It’s particularly good to know that the food waste is being taken to a state-of-the-art anaerobic digestion plant at Avonmouth, where it is turned into fertiliser and bio-methane gas. We now plan to roll out the food waste collection to some of our other whole-time (24/7) Fire Stations around the Avon area.” - Avon Fire & Rescue

Results

Initially, our contract with Avon Fire & Rescue was set up as a trial. However, due to its success the client has implemented the service as a permanent fixture and we are currently looking to provide more stations with food waste collection services. There has been a steady increase on the recorded weight of the bin upon each empty, as staff adapt. The service commenced in mid-August 2017 and to date we have collected 596kg of food which initially would have been sent to landfill. 

“We have been very happy with the food waste collection at Temple Fire Station. Thanks to the enthusiasm and involvement of all the staff at the station, the system has worked well, with a significant amount of waste diverted from the general waste bins. Waste is collected in a small caddy for tea bags, a medium caddy bin for all the food waste in the kitchen and a large external bin that is emptied and then re-lined every fortnight. Collections of the external bin have all gone smoothly.”- Avon Fire & Rescue