The most sustainable way of dealing with your food and garden waste is to compost at home.
Residents will be surprised to discover that it's not just fruit and vegetable peelings and garden prunings that can go in the compost bin, cardboard, eggshells and teabags make for great compost too.
Around a third of the rubbish we produce can be composted at home, including:
- Grass cuttings
- Vegetable peelings (including lettuce and cabbage leaves)
- Old flowers
- Fruit scraps (including citrus peel)
- Coffee grounds and filter paper
- Spent bedding plants
- Comfrey leaves
- Rhubarb leaves
- Young annual weeds (eg chickweed and speedwell)
- Pond algae and seaweed (in moderation)
- Garden prunings
- Dry leaves, twigs and hedge clippings
- Straw and hay
- Bedding from vegetarian pets
- Egg shells (crush them first to speed up composting)
- Egg boxes
- Cereal boxes
- Newspaper (scrunched up)
- Toilet and kitchen roll tubes
- Corrugated cardboard packaging (scrunched up in small amounts)
- Tea Bags
Purchase Composters, Water Butts and Wormeries
You can purchase composters, water butts and wormeries at discounted prices from the Essex County Council getcomposting website.
The Recycle Now website has information on home composting and offers support and guidance to those just starting to compost.
For other alternatives, including wormeries, please visit DIY stores, garden centres or online suppliers such as WRAP (Waste and Resources Action Programme).