Bromley residents are being told they can make both a financial and environmental difference by recycling more food waste.

The council says that despite 9,000 tonnes of food waste being recycled last year through its weekly collection service, 28 per cent of rubbish in its non-recyclable refuse collections is still food that could have gone for recycling.

It now wants to give people some food for thought through a campaign to encourage everyone to use the food waste collection instead of chucking unwanted or leftover grub in with the general rubbish.

Bromley Council says all the food waste collected across the borough is sent to a processing plant in Northamptonshire where it is used to generate electricity as well as produce a fertiliser which can be used in farming.

It costs more than £1.7 million to dispose of food waste being thrown away in the borough’s non-recyclable refuse collections, and the council says savings from this could go towards protecting other services.

There is an environmental impact too, with food waste sent to landfill releasing methane, a harmful greenhouse gas.

Also, the weekly food waste collection service gets rid of smelly stuff quicker than the fortnightly non-recyclable refuse collection - see

Councillor William Huntington-Thresher, executive councillor for environment and community services, said: “We are contacting residents and asking everyone to make the best use of our food waste collection service.

"A big thank you goes to residents who have already taken up this challenge but we all need to make sure we play our part.

"We are highly supportive of residents composting their own food waste at home, such as peelings etc, but the council is also able to compost all food, such as meat, which would not be suitable at home.”

He added: “It might also be for some residents that if they notice they are routinely throwing away unused food, that they might buy less food, which would show a direct saving in their household expenditure and be welcome all round.”

The council is also reminding residents that compostable liners for food waste are available at discounted prices from all the borough’s libraries, at £2.50 for 50 liners.

Food waste put out for the weekly collection can include plate scrapings, mouldy or out-of-date food, peelings, tea bags and raw or cooked meat.

See the council website for details of how to get a collection container if needed.