Skip to content
Glasgow City Council

Food's for thought as Glasgow launches major recycling drive

Published: 19 January 2016

Recycle For Glasgow

Scotland's largest city today (Tuesday, 19 January, 2016) launched the first phase of a major new initiative aimed at recycling and cutting the amount of waste it sends to landfill.

This week Glasgow City Council has started to deliver kitchen waste caddies to kerbside households across the city, distributing approximately 12,000 each week. Residents will then be able to deposit their food waste from the new caddy into their brown garden waste bins for fortnightly collection. The new service will be rolled out between now and early April to cover all 113,500 kerbside properties across Glasgow.

Initial food waste collections will be phased in across kerbside households in the North West area of the city between now and mid-February. The service will then be rolled out across the North East, South East and South West by early April (further information in Notes to Editors below). Information and advice is being sent to all households as part of the campaign, encouraging residents to use both their existing recycling services as much as possible and the new food waste collection service as it is introduced in their area.

In addition to the city-wide kerbside food waste collections, Glasgow is also improving its recycling services for tenements and other flatted properties, rolling out additional blue bins as well as food waste collection services for these households later this year. All the new services and investment are designed to make it easier for Glasgow's residents to actively recycle more of their waste.

The new services are being supported by a £3.2m grant from the Scottish Government delivered through Zero Waste Scotland to help Glasgow improve its current level of recycling. Glasgow sends nearly 165,000 tonnes* of household waste to landfill annually, and a recent analysis showed that 30 per cent of the city's landfill bins consisted of food waste which equates to nearly 50,000 tonnes per year, enough to fill Glasgow's Tollcross International Swimming Pool almost 70 times over.

On Tuesday, 19 January, Bailie Elaine McDougall, Glasgow City Council's Executive Member for Transport, Environment and Sustainability, joined pupils from St Charles' Primary at the Botanic Gardens where they showed their support for the Recycle For Glasgow campaign.

Bailie McDougall said: "We want to create a cleaner and greener Glasgow for everyone, especially our future generations.

"This week sees the start of the delivery of more than 113,000 food waste caddies to kerbside households across the city.

"The roll out of this new collection service means residents in Glasgow will be able to recycle even more of their household waste while at the same time help reduce the amount we currently send to landfill.

"We are committed to helping residents recycle as much as they can to support the Scottish Government's ambitious target of achieving 70 per cent recycling across Scotland by 2025.

"Collecting food waste from a mix of property types across the city is a mammoth operation and will be done in two phases starting with kerbside properties followed by multi-storey, flats and tenements from April. We hope to have every household in Glasgow recycling their food waste by March 2017.

"Glasgow's waste is a valuable resource and if we are to become one of the most sustainable cities in Europe, we need to make sure we take full advantage of it."

The kerbside collections will be followed by a new food waste service for multi-storey, flats and tenements from April with every household in Glasgow equipped to recycle their food waste by March 2017. This will be accompanied by investment in blue bin facilities for multi-dwelling properties to further enable all residents to recycle for Glasgow.

Iain Gulland, Chief Executive, Zero Waste Scotland said: "We're working to support Glasgow City Council with its introduction of new food waste collections as well as improvements to recycling infrastructure across the city this year. Engaging residents in the benefits of recycling, as well as making them aware of their new services and how to use them, is key to ensuring support for and uptake of these services.

"Increasing our national recycling rate has important economic and environmental benefits for Scotland and Zero Waste Scotland is working with all local authorities to help them put in place services and keep residents informed about what's happening and why."

Richard Lochhead MSP, Cabinet Secretary for the Environment said: "Recycling food waste to create fertiliser and green energy is important to Scotland's efforts to tackle the emissions that cause climate change.  That is why our regulations mean that food waste collections are rolling out to homes and businesses across Scotland.  To help Glasgow, as Scotland's most populous local authority, achieve this the Scottish Government is providing £3.2 million in funding through Zero Waste Scotland."

*based on latest SEPA figures (2014)

Additional information - important dates

The delivery of kitchen caddies and the roll out of food waste collections began week commencing 18 January 2016 to all kerbside households in the North West area of the city.

Further roll out of the programme is as follows (approximate dates):

  • North East: 13 February 2016 - 26 February 2016
  • South East: 27 March 2016 - 13 March 2016
  • South West: 14 March 2016 - 1 April 2016

Background information

Glasgow City Council carried out a 12 month food waste collection pilot between July 2013 and July 2014.  It took in more than 43,000 households through a mix of kerbside, tenement and high rise collections.

Food waste, once collected, will go to two processing plants for conversion into compost and electricity.

Zero Waste Scotland

Zero Waste Scotland is funded by the Scottish Government to support the delivery of its Zero Waste Plan and other low carbon and resource efficiency policy priorities.

Zero Waste Scotland is helping Scotland to become more efficient in its use of resources.  It is supporting progress towards Scotland's ambitious zero waste targets and enabling Scottish society to reap the benefits of more efficient use of resources.

Published: 19 January 2016

Share this page:

A to Z:

Council Services