Weekly food waste collections

Weekly food waste collections: frequently asked questions

What is the new food collections service?

Food waste will be collected separately to garden waste. Your brown bin will only be used for garden waste and the new outdoor silver caddy will be used for just food waste which will be collected weekly.


Why is the council introducing these changes?

Cherwell residents already recycle 2,500 tonnes of their food waste in the brown bin which is 25 per cent of the food waste thrown away per year in the district. Despite this excellent effort, around a third of the weight in the average rubbish bin is still food waste that could have been recycled.

With this new weekly service, we are supporting residents to recycle the other 7,500 tonnes that is currently thrown away.

The new service will not only help us to achieve our environmental goals, it will also meet the tough recycling targets that the Government has set us. Collecting and recycling food waste not only reduces the amount of methane gas produced, which is a cause of climate change, it helps us cut the costs of waste disposal.


When will the new service start?

Your new weekly food waste service will start from 1 March 2022. Your new outdoor silver caddy will be delivered prior to this date. However, this date is very much reliant upon disrupted global supply chains and it is possible that may change. We will keep you updated should this be the case.


How is my food waste recycled?

Food waste is taken to an anaerobic digester where it is broken down by bacteria, as it would be in our stomachs. The anaerobic digester turns the problem of food waste into two valuable resources: bio-fertilizers that help our farmers enrich the UK's soils, and green electricity to power our local homes and businesses. Food waste plants in Oxfordshire can power more than 9,000 homes.


Will I have new containers for the new food waste service?

You should already have an indoor caddy. Your new outdoor caddy will be delivered according to the schedule. Please see the website for further information.

If you don’t have an indoor caddy, you can order one from us.

Order a caddy


When will I receive my caddies?

We will begin delivering the outdoor silver caddies with further information in phases across the district from January 2022 to February 2022. You will be notified with a bin hanger placed on one of your bins prior to the delivery of your silver outdoor caddy.


Is my collection day changing?

No. Food waste will be collected from your silver outdoor caddy every week on your normal waste and recycling collection day. Just place it next to your other bin(s) by 7am on collection day.


Where do I put my outdoor silver caddy for collection?

Your bin and outdoor caddy should be placed outside on the edge of your property by 7am on collection day. Ensure it can be easily seen by the collection crew, remembering to lock it. Please remember to bring the bins back in as soon as possible after collection.


Can I put my indoor caddy out for a weekly collection?

No, please keep it indoors and empty it regularly into the silver outdoor caddy.


Do you provide an assisted collection service?

As we already offer an assisted collection service to collect bins from a more convenient place for our elderly and disabled residents, the service will apply to weekly food waste collection also.

If you are currently registered for the wheeled bin assisted collection service, then this will still continue as part of the weekly caddy food collection service and you do not need to contact us.

If you would like to enquire about setting up a new assisted collection, please contact our customer service team.


Can I have a bigger, smaller or a second indoor or outdoor caddy?

We only provide one indoor and one outdoor caddy for each household. There is only one size for indoor and one size for outdoor caddies.


What can I put in my food waste caddy?

The most common items you can place in your caddy are:

  • raw and cooked food waste
  • leftovers
  • meat and fish – raw and cooked, including bones
  • all dairy products such as cheese
  • raw and cooked vegetables and fruit
  • bread, cakes and pastries
  • rice, pasta and beans
  • uneaten food from your plates and dishes
  • tea bags and coffee grounds

If you are unsure, search for it on the Waste Wizard.


Should I continue to compost my vegetable peelings?

Yes - your garden deserves the best! Making your own compost is the most environmentally friendly way of dealing with uncooked food waste.


What if I don’t produce any food waste?

Remember, there is no amount too small. For example, banana skins, tea bags and plate scrapings can all be put in your kitchen caddy.


I don’t have time to do this, why should I?

Everything we throw away has an impact on the evironment. By recycling things correctly, we can make that impact as positive one. We want to turn as much of the district's food waste as possible into green electricity and fertiliser for farmers.


I don’t have space for the kitchen caddy, what should I do?

Everything we throw away has an impact on the environment. By recycling things correctly, we can make a positive impact. We want to turn as much of the district's food waste as possible into green electricity and fertiliser for farmers.


How do I get more liners?

Compostable liners can be bought from supermarkets, discount stores, DIY stores and garden centres. Please only buy bags that are marked for industrial or commercial composting. They will show the European standard EN 13432/14955 and may display the 'seedling' logo. Bags marked for home composting are not suitable.


Will the food waste in my caddy smell or attract insects?

No, if you empty your indoor caddy regularly, there should be no odour or risk of insects as your outdoor caddy is collected weekly.


How will I keep my caddies clean?

You can use old newspaper in the bottom of the caddies after it has been emptied to soak up any liquids which will fall out when the caddy is next emptied. You may want to clean your caddy with soapy water from time to time.


Can I continue to use my brown bin for food waste?

From 1 March 2022, you can no longer put food waste in your brown bin. Until this date, continue to put your food waste in your brown bin.


Food waste collections if you live in a flat

Due to the logistics of flats, we would ask that you contact your Managing Agent or Landlord and discuss the practicalities of food waste storage and collections with them first, as this may affect other residents in your building and there may also be limited space. We are happy to provide indoor and outdoor food waste caddies/bins, however we ask that your managing agent or landlord contacts us to make the arrangements.


Food waste collections for Places of Religious Worship and Community Halls

These establishments are entitled an indoor and outdoor caddy. We will deliver them at the same time as we deliver to residential properties in your area.