Waste minimisation: home digestion trials of biodegradable waste

Matthew L. Bench, Ryan Woodard, Marie Harder, Nikolaos Stantzos

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Minimisation of municipal solid waste and diversion from landfill are necessary for the UK to manage waste sustainably and achieve legislative compliance. A survey of householder attitudes and experiences of a trial for minimising household food waste from waste collection in the county of West Sussex, UK is described. The minimisation method used the Green Cone food digester, designed for garden installation. A postal questionnaire was distributed to 1000 householders who had bought a cone during the trial and a total of 433 responses were received. The main reason for people buying the Green Cone had been concerns about waste (88%), with 78% and 67% of respondents, respectively, claiming to have participated in recycling and home composting in the last 30 days. The waste material most frequently put in the digester was cooked food (91%), followed by fruit waste, vegetable matter and bones/meat. Some respondents were using it for garden and animal waste from pets. Most users found the Green Cone performed satisfactorily. Approximately, 60% of respondents had seen a reduction of 25–50% in the amount of waste they normally put out for collection, with analysis showing reported levels of reduction to be significant (p < 0.05). Additional weight surveys by householders recorded an average of 2.7 kg/(h week) diverted to the food digester.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)84-94
Number of pages11
JournalResources, Conservation and Recycling
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2005

Bibliographical note

© 2005. This manuscript version is made available under the CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 license http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/


  • Waste minimisation
  • Household waste
  • Biodegradable
  • Kitchen waste
  • Attitudes
  • Performance
  • Composition


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