Animal By Products (COMPOSTING)


What does the legislation do?

Under the UK Animal By-Products Order 1999 (as amended) it was illegal to allow livestock or wild birds access to catering waste which contained meat or products of animal origin, or which came from a premises handling meat or products of animal origin. This ban applied whether or not the catering waste had been treated. It therefore could not be used on land, effectively banning its use in compost and biogas treatment plants. The EU Animal By-Products Regulation (EC1774/2002), which applied in Member States from 1 May 2003, permits the treatment in approved composting and biogas premises of low-risk animal by-products and catering waste which contains meat or which comes from a premises handling meat. Animal by-products must be treated to a set EU standard, but the Regulation permits Member States to introduce their own national standards for premises which are handling only catering waste (and not any other animal by-products).

What exactly is catering waste?

Catering waste is defined in the EU Regulation as ‘all waste food including used cooking oil originating in restaurants, catering facilities and kitchens, including central kitchens and household kitchens.' This definition also includes catering waste from vegetarian restaurants and kitchens. The Regulation does not make a distinction for catering waste which is only vegetable matter, originating in rare circumstances from a premises which may not handle any animal by-products - such as a vegan household - although in theory there would be no need to control purely vegetable catering waste provided its source could be verified as originating from a kitchen handling only vegan food.





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