County Voice

Micro-chipping scheme underway in county pilot

Over 650 properties in the county have been part of a trial where microchips have been placed on food waste caddies.

Every week the council collects food waste through the orange caddy collection system.  The food waste collected is taken to an anaerobic composting facility near St Asaph and turned into a valuable soil fertilizer that is used by North Wales farmers.  The process also produces green energy for around 2,000 homes.

This trial is underway in four communities (in parts of Corwen, Ruthin, Prestatyn and Rhyl) and is part of the Council’s campaign to improve recycling rates, ahead of major changes to waste and recycling services in the county in 2021.

The information collected will inform the Council which properties have put out their caddy and which ones have not.   It will help us to gather monitoring data quickly and efficiently so it is able to visit people who are not using the orange caddy system over long periods and offer support to encourage them to recycle.  The Council already collects this information manually but it is time consuming and releasing this time would allow staff to talk to people who need more support to recycle. The data we get manually can also be inaccurate as it is not always possible to know which house a caddy belongs to.

The Council is working with a company called Schaefer who have developed the software and have offered the trial free of charge so the Council can explore the benefits of the new system and gain an understanding of feedback from residents, as well as see how well the software works. 

If the system helps increase recycling rates the Council will consider expanding the trial areas in January.

Tony Ward, Denbighshire’s Head of Highways, Transportation and Environment, said: “Despite people in Denbighshire being amongst the highest recyclers in the UK, a quarter of the waste we throw away in our black bins is food waste.  To hit our recycling targets set by Welsh Government we need to make sure all our food waste recycled and not wasted.

“Over the next 6 months we are launching a range of projects aimed at getting people to recycle food waste for the first time, as well as encouraging active recyclers to recycle even more.

“This is a ground-breaking project and we will be following the results of this initiative with great interest, to see whether it makes a difference to recycling rates and the public’s response to the scheme”. 

The Council’s recycling team will be out and about in the communities over the coming weeks to speak with residents. All residents living in the trial areas will have received a letter informing them of when the recycling team will be available.

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