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Regulation 7 – Separation of Food Waste from other brown bin wastes

Q.1 Does the stipulation in Regulation 7(1) (a) requiring that “food waste be kept separate from ‘other waste’ “ mean that food waste should not be mixed with other ‘Brown Bin’ type wastes that may arise on a premises and be kept separate from other waste?

Answer: Yes – Regulation 7(1) (a) requires that food waste must be source segregated and set aside from other waste, as well as from non-biodegradable materials and contaminants. The source segregated food waste must then be brought for submission to an authorised treatment process.

Q. 2. Does the obligation to source segregate food waste for submission to an authorised treatment process mean that some commercial establishments will be required to

  • keep a number of food waste fractions separately in two or more brown bins?; and
  • arrange discrete collections of such wastes?

Answer: The requirements of Regulation 7(1) are essentially that food waste be source segregated and submitted to an authorised treatment process. An authorised treatment process requires, inter alia, that the facility must be appropriately authorised for the treatment of waste in accordance with the provisions of animal by-product rules.

Food waste arising on premises where food is supplied for consumption may be generated in three broad classifications of animal by-product:

  • Catering waste,
  • Former foodstuff, and
  • Butchery waste.

Different rules exist for the processing of each of these types of animal by-product. For example:
A. Catering waste treated at a composting or biogas plant must be processed in accordance with national processing standards (refer to DAFF “Conditions” documents).
B. Former foodstuffs treated at a composting or biogas plant must be processed in accordance with the more onerous EU processing standards (refer to DAFF “Conditions” documents).
C. Butchery waste is classified as Category 3 material in accordance with Article 6. 1 (a) and (b) of Regulation (EC) No 1774/2002 and is not a permitted feedstock in a composting/biogas plant – instead, it is required to be sent to a rendering plant for treatment.
Accordingly, the types of food wastes generated and the animal by-product approval granted for the treatment plant(s) for which the food waste is destined will determine the extent of source segregation needed.

For example, if a premises produces “catering waste” and “former foodstuffs” only and proposes to use an authorized composting facility that has animal by-product approval for EU processing standards (refer to DAFF “Conditions” documents), then the source segregation arrangements can combine the “catering waste” and “former foodstuffs” as these can both be treated together at the Plant of destination.

Conversely, if a premises produces “catering waste”, “former foodstuffs” and “butchery waste” and chooses to use three separate authorized treatment processes approved to receive and treat “catering waste”, “former foodstuffs” and “butchery waste” respectively, then source segregation arrangements will need to be made to provide for these three discrete streams of animal by-product to be separately set aside.

Q.3 Does Regulation 7 (1)(b)(i) allow an authorised waste collector transport food waste to a transfer station for bulking up rather than transferring directly for an authorised treatment process?

Answer: Yes- it is acceptable for an authorized waste collector to deliver the food waste to an appropriately authorised transfer station