Food Recycling: The Options

Food Recycling: Where can the waste go?

With increased efforts for UK businesses to contribute to a circular economy, it’s no surprise to find out that food recycling is a growing business venture. Taking high-calorific waste and putting it through a food recycling process, such as anaerobic digestion, is a cheap and efficient way of producing bio-fuel. With it being beneficial to the environment and economy, it’s likely that businesses will experience some financial benefits from the government to continue their efforts.

With plans to more than halve food waste, it’s important that the food sees a more purposeful end-of-life to create more enthusiasm within recyclers. One outlet for food recycling is animal feed, which is considered to be a starch-rich diet. Many animals would very much benefit from a specially made animal feed derived from food waste, and it would provide various nutrition that they may not already get. Farmers know that the healthier their animals, the better their product and surely a recycled animal feed would be better value and even have the potential to be home made!

In the UK, 7 million tonnes of food is wasted during the manufacturing process alone! A considerably higher figure is proposed for the total amount of food waste going to landfill. With more efficient machinery, this figure could be massively reduced, although there will be some natural waste for many products. If businesses are more conscious to this issue and begin to collect their food waste from the manufacturing process, they could help to see it recycled, and boost their own business’ CSR, which appeals to customers.


For businesses who have a large amount of feedstock and bi-product being wasted during the manufacturing process, one food recycling technique, known as Anaerobic Digestion, can provide help. Anaerobic Digestion can turn food waste into energy, offsetting carbon footprint and reducing bills. One such business to invest in this food recycling technology is NestlĂ©, where 8% of their operation in the North East is being powered through food waste. That’s quite a high figure, when you consider that it’s simply the wasted parts of their products being turned into energy to help them create new products. Not every business has the right product or wastage to do this, but many do and they don’t realize it!

Food recycling is resource efficient, it keeps food in the cycle and prevents it from rotting in a landfill. There is little excuse for food going to landfill, as it has so much potential as fertilizer. Turning the waste into animal feed allows for more crops to be grown for human consumption, and even food recycling for bio-fuels has a positive impact.

There are several different machines that can be used to tackle your food waste stream, click here to see.