China’s Rapid Growth in Food Waste Recycling: 10 Stories from Around the Countrythucice
Last week, several cities around China made significant developments towards addressing food waste management. This includes Meishan City, where the local government announced a new program for collecting and treating kitchen waste. 3 demonstration pilot projects around the country announced major new developments. Located in Chengdu City, Dayi County in the Tianfu New Ventures District announced the successful implementation of newly developed kitchen waste management technology. Here, we relay 10 news updates from around the country to detail developments in the industry.
1. Local government ramps up actions and enforcement on food waste treatment (Location: Beijing City, Shijingshan District)
On August 26, 2017, the Shijingshan management department has implemented rigorous checks on large food and beverage businesses, which included (but was not limited to) Haidilao, Hannashan large chain restaurants. They investigate for gas leaks detection systems (safety), whether food waste is mixed with municipal garbage (practices), and any systems in place for monitoring and changing behavior (management). According to law enforcement officers, recent checks have found that large commercial centres (e.g. Wanda, Xilongduo, etc) mostly conform to local regulations. They do, however, have some minor issues, for example placements of garbage receptacles, infrequent garbage collection, mixed garbage in receptacles, etc. Enforcement officers have already pushed for improvements, and have arranged for future checks to ensure that improvements have indeed been made.
2. Multiple measures to improve the collection and transportation of food waste (Location: Sichuan Province, Suining City,)
August 25, 2017 In order to solve the problems of food waste dumping and mixing with municipal waste, the Hedong New District government’s city management department has implemented several measures to properly collect and transport food waste.
The local government has contracted the services of an interim team – starting on August 15, 2017 – with proper technologies to take responsibility of food waste collection and transport in the district. Specifically, they will collect food waste from large establishments (larger companies, school canteens, etc.) and transport to an electric cogeneration plant for treatment. Services have thus far been retained for a 6 month trial period. This marks a milestone in integrated services offered by the government, with cooperation among several different departments: food and beverage services, environmental protection, enforcement, public security, etc.
3. Building on the management of kitchen waste collection vehicles (Location: Jiangsu Province, Nanjing City)
August 24, 2017 The Nanjing city management department released an announcement to all restaurants regarding the vehicles used for kitchen waste collection. All collection vehicles will be required to have completely sealed compartments for waste, emit no odours, must be closed during transportation, and have no leakages of liquid or solid remnants. Further, the body of the vehicle must be clean with no oil pollution. The city will begin 1 month of strict inspections starting on September 1, 2017. Inspections will take place in the morning from 7 am to 11 am; affected business are expected to provide full cooperation and registration if needed. First offenders will be given a day to comply, second offenders must make any changes on the spot, and third offenders will be fined.
4. Deployment of the “Kitchen Action Plan” to improve governance of kitchen waste management (Location: Guangdong Province, Shenzhen City)
August 24, 2017 The Pingshan District government in Shenzhen carried out the “Kitchen Action Plan” to boost governance of kitchen waste management in the area. The plan targets improved waste collection, regulated transport, and will ramp up enforcement and employ other measures to promote comprehensive food waste management in the region. The city’s is actively promoting the development of new food waste collection facilities and systems to solve the problem in the area.
5. Meishan City approves the “City-wide 2-year action plan for developing waste treatment” (Location: Sichuan Province, Meishan City)
August 17, 2017 In the city’s fourth session of the 19th executive meeting held by the People’s Government, they passed the “Meishan City city-wide, 2-year action plan for developing waste management”. It includes the following targets:
- Complete province-wide plans on treatment of the hazardous portion of municipal solid waste by the end of 2018 (1 year before provincial target of 2020);
- Develop a city-wide demonstration project on the classification and collection of municipal solid waste, including an accompanying information management system;
- Reach investments of 38 billion RMB for food waste treatment
6. 1086 enterprises sign an agreement to recycle food waste (Location: Hainan Province, Haikou City)
August 24, 2017 In order to improve the monitoring and enforcement of food waste management, improve the city’s environment and prevent food waste oil from ending up on dinner tables as gutter oil, Haikou City’s Meilan district food and drug monitoring bureau implemented the food waste recycling and treatment plan. It was conducted in accordance with Haikou City’s Food Waste Collection, Transportation and Treatment Special Projects Work Plan.
The Meilan district food and drug monitoring bureau, in collaboration with the works department, worked with local food and beverage enterprises to sign a recycling agreement with the Hainan Chengmai Shenzhou Biogas company. It prohibits enterprises from privately treating the waste, and also from discharging untreated waste. To date, 1086 enterprises in the Meilan district have entered into agreement, comprising about 35% of the food and beverage enterprises in the district.
Meilan district will continue to facilitate further agreements, with the goal of reaching 70 – 85% of enterprises by the end of the year.
7. Food waste collection and transportation project kick-off (Location: Inner Mongolia Province, Wuhai City)
August 21, 2017 Wuhai City’s food waste collection, transport and treatment project has been kicked off. The city had started developing a dedicated food waste management system in 2015, which included treating hazardous portions, resource recycling, and comprehensive waste treatment. Work has lasted up to the present day, where the city successfully applied to be part of the 5th group of food waste treatment demonstration projects. Total investment for the project will be 4.7 billion RMB, which will be used to develop a 50 tonne per day collection and treatment system, and cover 3 different communities. The project will be based on an anaerobic digestion of the food waste, whereby collected waste is decomposed with bacteria in an oxygen-free environment to produce methane gas. The leftover digestate can be used for fertilizer, and grease used as a raw material for daily cleaning liquids.
8. Food waste treatment plant is able to cover a small commercial area (Location: Shanxi Province, Taiyuan City)
August 22, 2017 In May of this year, the city has started operation of a food waste treatment plant, and is now able to cover all food and beverage enterprises in a small commercial area. It is estimated that coverage will be expanded to all of Yingze District by the end of September.
Today, the daily capacity to treat food waste is 120 tonnes per day, and it is expected to increase to 200 tonnes per day. Total coverage by the end of the project will reach 6 districts, including the Shanxi Comprehensive and Reform New District, the Stainless Steel Industrial Park and all districts within Qingxu County. Total investment for the project will be approximately 28.5 billion RMB.
9. The first food waste treatment plant in Chongqing City will cover the southeast area of the city, and be commissioned next month in Qianjiang (Location: Chongqing City)
August 22, 2017 A project to develop food waste treatment in the southeast part of Chongqing City will start in September. Total investment for the project was 9.1 billion RMB, which includes construction of a 150 tonnes per day plant. It will cover the Qianjiang, Youyang, Pengshui districts and its surrounding areas. An additional 1.5 billion RMB will be invested in a 1800 tonne per year treatment plant for treating the hazardous portion of organic waste.
Post-commissioning of the plant, food waste will be collected from local restaurants and hotels. It then goes through several treatment processes: oil-water separation, separation of large objects, crushing and grinding, and then decomposition. It will be able to meet the city’s standards for food waste treatment, and divert a large portion of waste going to landfill. At the same time, it will also produce bio diesel and organic fertilizer. Combined, it provides significant social, environmental and economic benefits.
10. A special event was successfully held in the Tianfu Jingronghui Dayi New Venture County (Location: Sichuan Province, Chengdu City)
August 26, 2017 The Chengdu City successfully held the event “A Future Heralded by Green Science and Technology”, which gathered experts, academics and businesses to achieve productive results. While they covered several different topics, one of the most memorable was on the “Li Shikang food waste sorting and recycling project”, administered by the Chinese Academy of Engineering. As its spokesperson Liu Renhuai introduces, he started food waste disposal research in 2009, and had reached successful commercialization in 2013 in Guangzhou City. As he states “food waste treatment is the hardest to treat of waste, but we have patented technology to use specific bacteria for decomposing the waste. After decomposition, the waste becomes a mixture of ethanol, industrial oils, protein powder, fuel, dry ice and liquid fertilizer. Altogether, the process produces zero waste, zero discharge and is fully recyclable.