Communities and Local Government Committee: Press Notice

Session 2006 - 07    25 October 2007



The Government “strongly supports” weekly food waste collection and says research suggests weekly collection offers the best environmental outcome for it.

Responding to the Communities and Local Government Committee’s report on Refuse Collection in England, the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs said guidance had been issued suggesting local councils should consider collecting food waste weekly.

Welcoming the Committee’s report, DEFRA also confirmed that councils who collect food waste only every two weeks should supply hard wheeled bins or boxes rather than plastic sacks and said it would consider the need to assess risks arising from less frequent collection methods.

The Government stress that how rubbish is collected and disposed of is a matter for England’s 400-plus local councils but are working to ensure that performance standards are set in agreements with local government. They say: “The evidence does not suggest alternating collections of recyclates with residual waste is the only way to boost recycling but equally experiences from authorities in both the UK and abroad suggests that such schemes can work well, and can contribute to significantly higher recycling rates, provided they are well designed and implemented.”

They also believe new joint waste authorities involving groups of councils will help to “encourage a convergence of all aspects of the recycling services”, including more common “iconography” so that the “look and feel of recycling activities is more common to householders wherever they live”. 

The Government’s response to the Committee’s Fifth Report of Session 2006-7 will be published as the Committee’s Second Special Report of Session 2006-7 (HC 1095). The original report (HC 536-I) was published in July.

The Committee will publish the Government Response at midday on 25 October 2007.

Copies can be obtained on request from the Communities and Local Government Committee. Copies of the Special Report will be sent to all those who submitted evidence to the inquiry.

The Special Report can be viewed on the Committee’s website from approximately 2pm on 25 October at:


1. Committee Membership is as follows: Dr Phyllis Starkey MP (Chair, Lab), Sir Paul Beresford MP (Con), Mr Clive Betts MP (Lab), John Cummings MP (Lab), Martin Horwood MP (Lib Dem), Mr Greg Hands MP (Con), Anne Main MP (Con), Mr Bill Olner MP (Lab), Dr John Pugh MP (Lib Dem), Emily Thornberry MP (Lab), David Wright MP (Lab).

2. Specific notice info or / More information on the Committee’s report on Refuse Collection can be found on the Committee website at:

Specific Committee,                       020 7219 1353 or 020 7219 4972                                                   

Media Information: Laura Kibby, 020 7219 0718

Committee Website:

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