What is Food Waste?
"food waste" includes any food substance used, available to be used, or intended to be used, for food by human persons and discarded as household waste; including fruit/veg peels, leftover food, out of date foods, meat bones, tea bags, eggs, soups/gravies/sauces, bread/biscuits/cakes, sweets/chocolate, substances/ingredients used in the production of food, (packaged and unpackaged) (cooked and uncooked).
What is the purpose of the Food Waste Regulations?
The Food Waste and the Household Food Waste and Bio -Waste Regulations are designed to promote the segregation and beneficial use of food waste arising in the commercial sector and households. They will increase the amount of food waste that is recovered through the production of energy, compost and digestate. In particular, the Regulations will facilitate in particular the achievement of the targets set out in Directive 99/31/EC on the landfill of waste for the diversion of biodegradable municipal waste from landfill sites, by directing source-segregated food waste to composting and biogas plants and to other forms of treatment (other than incineration).
What is the law in relation to Food Waste?
The Commercial & Household Food Waste Regulations will facilitate the achievement of the targets set out in Directive 99/31/EC on the landfill of waste for the diversion of biodegradable municipal waste from landfill sites. The regulations will also meet requirements of the recently-transposed Waste Framework Directive, Directive 2008/98/EC. The regulations were signalled in the recently published national waste management policy: "A Resource Opportunity -Waste Management Policy in Ireland"
Who has obligations under the (Commercial) Food Waste Regulations?
The Regulations impose obligations on the generators of food waste, such as state buildings restaurants and cafés, hot food outlets, canteens, hotels and larger guest houses, hospitals, universities, airports, supermarkets and other food retailers where food is prepared, to segregate these materials and make them available for separate collection or direct transfer by the producer for the purposes of authorised treatment. Alternatively, these materials can be treated on the premises where they are produced under specified conditions.
The Regulations include a general prohibition on the deposition of food waste in the residual waste collection service.
Authorised waste collectors are obligated to provide a source segregated food waste collection service to its clients. Waste collectors are obliged to inform the relevant local authority of persons who are refusing to avail of a source segregated waste collection service.
Who has obligations under the Household Food Waste Regulations?
The Household Food Waste Regulations impose obligations on:
- Households, including apartments, that produce food waste - who must segregate such waste and keep it separate from other non-biodegradable waste, and have it separately collected by an authorised waste collector.
- Waste collectors - who must provide a separate collection service for household food waste.
Householders may alternatively:
- Compost the food waste at home, or
- Bring the food waste to authorised treatment centres, for recovery in an environmentally acceptable way, such as civic amenity sites, anaerobic digestion sites or for incineration.
Households, including apartments, are not allowed to:
- dispose of food waste in the residual waste collection (the black bin)
Authorised waste collectors are obligated to provide a source segregated food waste collection service to households, including apartments.
Why do I need to have a food waste bin?
The Regulations place an obligation on producers of food waste, household and commercial, to avail of a source segregated collection service. Food waste producers, household and commercial, must segregate such waste and keep it separate from other non-biodegradable waste, and have it separately collected by an authorised waste collector. Deposition of food waste in the residual (the black bin) waste collection is prohibited.
Where can I get advice on how to reduce the amount of food I am wasting?
http://www.stopfoodwaste.ie/ provides a step-by-step approach on how to eliminate, reduce, reuse, recover and dispose of food waste.
Can I compost my food waste?
Yes. Householders may compost the food waste at the premises where the food waste is originally produced. Please note only raw fruit and vegetables, tea bags, used coffee beans and egg shells may be placed in a home compost unit. No cooked food, meat, fish or chicken.
Businesses may compost the food waste on the premises where it arises under specified conditions and authorisation from the Local Authority. The compost arising may only be used within the grounds of the premises where the food waste originated provided no animals are on site.
Who can I contact in Galway City Council regarding Food Waste?
Tel: 091 536400