Yesterday’s story in the Daily Mail ‘Slop-buckets farce’ (23 May) gives a misleading view of the rapidly growing role which food waste and anaerobic digestion (AD) are playing in delivering economic and environmental benefits to the UK.
The fact is that in the UK we still produce 15 million tonnes of food waste every year. In the past this was sent to landfill where it rotted in the ground producing harmful gases. Now we can turn this waste into useful and valuable products. It produces renewable energy and creates a viable, cheap alternative to conventional fertiliser – and deals with the problem of ‘smelly waste’. I think this is good news for us all.
The growth of AD in the UK over the past five years has been phenomenal. In 2005 there was just one facility processing food waste. Now there are 46. This is a significant economic and environmental success story for the UK. Not to mention the jobs it creates.
The Mail story said that the energy created can only supply power for 40,000 homes. Frankly, I, and many others, think this is remarkable and should be celebrated.
AD is not a new technology. However, a great deal of work has gone into ensuring the products produced are safe and appropriate for agriculture, regeneration, landscaping and many other uses.