Food waste caddy full of food scraps

Food waste recycling

Recycling food waste is super easy and can help power London’s homes

How to recycle your food waste

Most councils in London collect food waste, though not all, and not all collect it from flats or estates. Check our services at a glance area to see if food waste is collected in your area and check our postcode locator to see if you can recycle it at home!

If you have a food waste recycling service, your council will usually give you a caddy for your kitchen and a larger outdoor food waste bin. Some councils collect food and garden waste together, so in these cases, your outdoor bin will be bigger.

You can use any container as a food waste caddy in your kitchen though, so long as you put your food waste into your council-provided bin outside your house. You can line your caddy with newspaper, collect your food loose or buy starch liners (not biodegradable bags which can cause problems).

Here's an idea of what you can recycle...

Person holding a tub of used coffee grounds

Don't have a food waste collection?

If food waste isn’t collected in your area, you could always try home composting, but if that’s really not your thing, for now you’ll have to throw it in your rubbish bin. The good news is that there’s loads of ways you can reduce how much you waste in the first place!

Check out our top tips for reducing your waste.

Find out more

The magic behind food waste recycling

Food that you throw away doesn’t break down harmlessly like you might think. If food waste ends up in landfill, it rots and releases methane, a greenhouse gas which is 25 times more potent than carbon dioxide – bad news when the world is already in a climate emergency!

When you collect your food waste for recycling, instead of ending up in landfill or incinerated, it can be sent to special processing plants to be transformed into electricity or compost for farmers. If your council recycles food waste, make the most of it and recycle all your inedible bits and pieces (egg shells, coffee grounds and the like) and any food that you didn’t manage to eat before it’s use by date. Remember to remove all packaging – only food waste should go in your kitchen caddy!

Anaerobic digestion

In-vessel composting

Fact banana icon

ONE banana peel equals full charge, twice!

Recycling just ONE banana peel could generate enough energy to fully charge a smartphone twice.

Fact banana icon

A-Z of recycling

You can use our A-Z search to find out information about most things you can recycle and where to recycle them.

Search