Graham Mountford, the Centre Manager at the Broad Street Mall Reading explains the challenges being faced by Centre Manager’s throughout the UK and what he has endeavoured to achieve to protect the service charge against the rising costs of existing and pending legislation in waste management and in particular, Food Waste.

The Broad Street Mall has traditionally recycled waste materials such as cardboard and plastic. Now and together with every food waste provider in the UK the Centre faces the prospect of the new waste food legislation which is soon to be introduced in England.

In partnership with Enviro-Waste GB the team at Broad Street Mall have achieved their goal of getting their waste management to a sustainable carbon neutral level.

Notwithstanding the goal of zero to landfill, Steve Fawke was very keen to continually reduce and manage the Shopping Centre’s carbon impact.

Enviro-Waste worked in close partnership with the management team at Broad Street Mall to consider how best to move the Centre forward and provide a future proof solution; in order to achieve their goal whilst considering the current market drivers, Cost, Food Legislation & Environmental Impact.

All Cardboard and plastic at site is baled and stored and will only be collected once the site has a full 20 tonnes worth of material, this saves unnecessary transport and provides the centre with a valuable source of income.

Food Waste at the Shopping Centre is now separated at source and dealt with on site. The Centre has invested in the very latest Food to Water equipment available in today’s market place. 

The process used is Rapid Food Decomposition a technology that has been around since the early 1920’s but only now is available in such a way that individual locations can utilise equipment for food waste on site.   

It is estimated that 70 tons of food per annum will be processed through this equipment, returning an impressive 56,000 litres of water from the waste food back to the water table.  Compared to the traditional bin to compost method of Food Waste Disposal this method means that Broad Street Mall has reduced its Food Waste Land Miles by approximately 7800 miles per annum based on average round trip of 50 miles this equates to 6.123 tonnes of CO2 being saved by the Shopping Centre.

The remainder of the waste on site, once the other three materials have been removed is now collected in a compactor skip and taken to a MRF where any valuable reusable materials are removed and the balance of the waste is sent for fuel to energy creating Green Power.  Not only is Broad Street Mall very proud of their site contributing to Green Energy it has even taken this process a stage further by incorporating a new static compactor with improved pressing power the skip container is now considerably heavier upon collection which in turn has lowered the wheels in and out to the site, based on the results so far it is estimated that over 1000 waste transportation miles will be saved by the Centre this year.  The carbon reduction from this will be around 0.8 tonnes of C02.  

The energy from the waste now reused from the Broad Street Mall produces the equivalent level of power which would power 26 average UK households for a year.

As a Centre Manager I am extremely proud to have created a “Zero to Landfill” platform at the Broad Street Mall in Reading. Whilst being the first Shopping Centre in the UK to introduce a food treatment process in situ.