This summer sees the introduction of the ‘Brown Bin’ for household food waste to the Letterkenny area. The new ‘Household Food and Bio-Waste Regulations’, will come into effect for Letterkenny from July 1. 

This regulation will require all householders in the Letterkenny area to separate their food waste and make it available for conversion into compost. Typically this requires householders to place both cooked and uncooked food waste into a ‘Brown Bin’, provided by your waste collector.

These regulations apply to Letterkenny in 2014 with the service also becoming available to those in smaller urban centres over the next two years.

“The purpose of the Regulation is to divert food waste, which is biodegradable, away from landfill to facilities which are authorised to treat it and turn it into a high quality compost,” according to Suzanne Bogan, Waste Awareness Officer with Donegal Co. Council.

For the householder, this means that they must separate their food waste and ensure that it is not placed in the ‘black’ bin or disposal bin. A ‘Brown’ bin, for food waste, will be offered to all householders in Letterkenny by their local waste collectors over the next two months, but if for any reason, they are not contacted, it is important that these individuals contact their waste collector themselves to find out what arrangements are in place for their area. 

Households can continue to home compost fruit and vegetable peelings in the garden but this method will not suitable for food waste such as dairy products, meat, poultry, fish, bones, leftover plate scrapings etc.

“Under these regulations, those who place their food waste in the residual ‘black’ bin or use a macerator or other shredding device to dispose of food waste, will be deemed to be in non-compliance with the legislation and may result in court proceedings which could lead to a maximum fine of €4000 upon conviction”, according to Dearn McClintock, Waste Regulations Officer with Donegal Co. Council.

“Donegal Co. Council is the enforcement body for this legislation and will be active in making sure that householders in the designated areas comply with the legislation. 

Anyone with queries on the introduction of the service should contact either their own waste collector or the Council's Environment Section on (074) 91 53900. More information can also be found on www.donegalcoco.ie or www.brownbin.ie

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