1 May 2017 - ALL BIN COLLECTIONS AS NORMAL

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Bins and Recycling

Food Waste Collections

Image of from Food Waste leaflet

We are changing the way we collect food waste from April 2017.

All food waste – from leftover scraps of dinner to the forgotten cucumber languishing in your fridge – must be placed in your brown bin.

You cannot put any food waste into your black bin.

Why?

It's the Law - a change in legislation requires us to.

It saves money - it costs us twice as much to dispose of food waste in a black bin as it does to recycle food waste from a brown bin.

It prevents environmental damage – food waste that ends up in landfill is the most polluting type of waste due to the release of harmful gases.

It helps the environment – Food waste in brown bins is made into high quality compost.

Tips for using your kitchen caddy

  1. Line your caddy with a biodegradable bag. We will supply these three times a year. If you run out, you can buy more or use newspaper to line the caddy. Please do not use plastic bags as these will not biodegrade.
  2. Put your food waste in. When it is full, remove the bag and knot it. You can clean your caddy by rinsing it or wiping it with a cloth.
  3. Drop your bag of food waste into the brown bin or kerbside caddy. Newspaper or kitchen roll can go directly into the brown bin as they will decompose. Leave it outside on collection day by 7.30am with its lid closed.

What should I put in my brown bin?

All food waste (without exception) – this includes:

  • Meat and fish, raw and cooked, including bones
  • All dairy products and eggs
  • Raw and cooked fruit and vegetables, including peelings
  • Breads, cakes and pastries
  • Rice, pasta and beans
  • Leftover food from plates and out of date food
  • Tea and coffee grounds
  • Other compostable waste such as garden waste, cold fire ashes, paper kitchen roll, paper towels, paper tissues.
  • No plastic bags or other packaging (compostable bags only). Packaging must be removed and where recyclable should be rinsed and placed in your kerbie box or blue bin.

What happens if I get it wrong?

Our refuse collectors will be keeping an eye on the black bins they lift. If we find food waste in a black bin, we will place a warning sticker on the bin. If If you continue to place food waste in your black bin we will give you another reminder with an amber sticker. If you receive a red sticker on your bin it will not be emptied for repeatedly failing to remove food waste . You will need to remove the food waste before that bin can be emptied as part of the next scheduled collection.

Where do I get extra caddy liners?

You will receive a free supply of caddy liners 3 times a year in April, July and October.  In the Ballymena area you will no longer be able to use the red tag for replacement caddy liners. 

If you run out before you receive your next supply you can buy more at designated council facilities for £1.30 per roll.

These are:

  • Head Office, The Braid, 1-29 Bridge Street Ballymena BT43 5EJ
  • Ballymena Office, Ardeevin, 80 Galgorm Road Ballymena BT42 1AB
  • The Seven Towers Leisure Centre, Trostan Avenue Ballymena BT43 7BL
  • Ballymena Showgrounds, Warden Street, Ballymena BT43 7DR
  • Peoples Park, Doury Road, Ballymena BT43 6JA
  • Carrickfergus Office, Museum & Civic Centre, 11 Antrim Street Carrickfergus BT38 7DG
  • Larne Office, Smiley Buildings, Victoria Road, Larne BT40 1RU
  • Larne Visitor Information Centre, Narrow Gauge Road, Larne BT40

Liners can also be purchased at some local retailers.​

Help! I need more advice

We understand this may be a big shift in habit for some people who don’t use their brown bins for food waste. We want to encourage you to make this change. 

To request a brown bin or kitchen food caddy, please E: recycling@midandeastantrim.gov.uk or call T: 0300 124 5000.

Food Waste - Frequently Asked Questions

What has changed for household food waste recycling in Mid and East Antrim Borough Council?
You must place all your food waste in your brown bin.  No food waste is allowed in your black bin.

Why does council ban food waste from black bins?
There is a new law introduced which states councils must collect food waste separately from other waste.

Apart from legal requirement, why is it important to put food waste in brown bins?
We send the food waste we collect for recycling to make a garden compost product.  If food waste goes to landfill, it rots and produces gases that are very harmful to the environment.

What about food waste odour and pests?
We collect food waste every two weeks, so food waste doesn’t stay any longer in these bins than it would if placed in the black bin.  Food waste in brown bins doesn’t increase odours or pest problems compared to putting food waste in your black bin.  Keep your lid tightly closed and you should not have any problems with pests.

Will my rates bill rise due to the cost of recycling my food waste?
Recycling food waste costs half the amount of landfilling food waste because the government charges the council an expensive landfill tax. 

Money saved by recycling food waste will:

  • Help keep rates bills down
  • Be invested in new and better community services

What about the mess of recycling my food waste at home?
The council provides a free kitchen food waste caddy and will also deliver free rolls of compostable food waste caddy liners to your home three times a year.  Use these to store your food waste separately in your kitchen or utility room and dispose of this in a mess free way.  When the bag is full of food waste, tie a knot in your caddy liner, take the bag out of the caddy and drop the bag in your brown bin.

What type of food waste must I recycle?
Put all food waste in your brown bin.  This includes:

  • Raw and cooked fruit and vegetables, including peelings
  • Meat (raw and cooked) including bones
  • Bread, cakes and pastries
  • Rice, pasta and beans
  • Dairy products and eggs
  • Leftover food from plates and out of date food
  • Tea and coffee grounds

What happens if I run out of compostable liners for my caddy?
You will receive a free supply of caddy liners 3 times a year in April, July and October. If you run out before you receive your next supply you can buy more at designated council facilities for £1.30 per roll.

These are:

  • Head Office, The Braid, 1-29 Bridge Street Ballymena BT43 5EJ
  • Ballymena Office, Ardeevin, 80 Galgorm Road Ballymena BT42 1AB
  • The Seven Towers Leisure Centre, Trostan Avenue Ballymena BT43 7BL
  • Ballymena Showgrounds, Warden Street, Ballymena BT43 7DR
  • Peoples Park, Doury Road, Ballymena BT43 6JA
  • Carrickfergus Office, Museum & Civic Centre, 11 Antrim Street Carrickfergus BT38 7DG
  • Larne Office, Smiley Buildings, Victoria Road, Larne BT40 1RU
  • Larne Visitor Information Centre, Narrow Gauge Road, Larne BT40

Liners can also be purchased at some local retailers.​

Can I use plastic bags for food waste?
Plastic bags are not acceptable in caddies or food waste bins.  You can only use compostable bags.  You can put loose, unbagged food waste in the bin, line the caddy with newspaper or wrap food waste in newspaper and put this in your food waste bin.

Can I put food packaging along with food waste in the brown bin?
Don’t put any packaging in the food waste bin, only compostable bags.  Rinse recyclable packaging and put this in the blue recycling bin or red/black Kerbside recycling boxes.  If the packaging is not recyclable, put this in the black bin.

What else can I put in the food waste bin for recycling?
You can put other compostable material in the food waste bin:

  • Green waste such as grass, weeds, plant and hedge clippings
  • Fire ashes (cold)
  • Paper kitchen roll, paper towels and paper
  • Wet card and paper that can’t go into the blue bin or red/black Kerbside boxes
  • Small amounts of shredded paper
  • Clean Straw, hay or sawdust

What happens if I put food waste in my black bin?
Refuse collectors will be keeping an eye on the black bins they lift. If they find food waste in a black bin, they will place a yellow warning sticker on the bin to remind the householder to place food waste in their black bin. If they find it a second time, they will place an amber sticker on the bin, with the same reminder and. On the third occasion, refuse collectors will flag that bin with a red sticker noting that the bin was not emptied and the householder will need to remove the food waste before that bin can be emptied as part of the next scheduled collection.

What are food waste arrangements for households in apartments?
Apartments have been assessed on a case by case basis at the planning stage of most developments and should have sufficient space to meet the needs of recycling and receive the same service as other householders. We can assess individual needs if required, you can contact us to discuss on T: 0300 124 5000

Where can I get more advice or help?
To get more advice or help about food waste recycling:
E: recycling@midandeastantrim.gov.uk T: 0300 124 5000