Processing food and garden waste

We recycle food and garden waste on behalf of the district and borough councils with separate collections.

Food waste

Around 36,000 tonnes of food waste is collected in Kent, and is taken to a new anaerobic digester at Blaise Farm Quarry near Kings Hill to be turned into biogas. Anaerobic digestion is the process of breaking down food without the use of oxygen.

The biogas is fed to the national grid as well as powering the plant itself. The gas and electricity produced from the food waste is enough to power 3,600 homes as well as produce farm fertiliser.

Our video explains how the anaerobic digestion plant works to recycle food waste.

Recycling food in Kent - video transcript

No food waste is sent to landfill. It’s still better to use the food you buy and reduce food waste, go to the Love Food Hate Waste website to get tips for food storage and recipes.

You can find out more about the anaerobic digestion process on the Wrap website.

Garden waste

Garden waste is taken to large composting halls, then a process called in-vessel composting (IVC) provides the optimum conditions for the waste to compost in terms of:

  • moisture
  • temperature
  • carbon-nitrogen ratio
  • oxygen.

The waste is heated up to 60°C for a minimum of 16 days while being turned every 48 hours to kill off any harmful microbes. After treatment, the compost is screened and left to stabilise to ensure a nutrient-rich and peat-free compost that is suitable to use as a soil improver in farming and agriculture.

It is fast, effective and meets regulatory requirements for sanitation required by the Animal By-Product Regulations (ABPR) as well as PAS100 quality requirements.

Find out where your waste goes

If you would like to find out more about what happens to Kent’s household waste and recycling, view the data on where our waste and recycling goes.