Food waste collections

Coronavirus - impact on food waste collections

Like many organisations, the council is facing an unprecedented challenge in continuing to deliver services while responding to the coronavirus. It is inevitable that sickness, isolation measures and increased childcare responsibilities will reduce the number of staff available at different times.

We are all responding to this challenge together and we would ask you to think carefully about buying only what you need and making creative choices with cooking and storage. This will help keep food waste to a minimum. Love Food Hate Waste has some tips on proper food storage and recipes that we hope will be useful.

Food waste

Food waste accounts for about half the weight of household rubbish in Tower Hamlets. When food waste is collected separately it can be turned in to something useful. The food waste collected from households in Tower Hamlets is taken to a special processing plant where it is turned in to compost and used by farmers as a fertiliser.

The service covers all street level properties. Unfortunately, at the moment we cannot offer a food waste collection service from blocks of flats. However we do support home and community composting. More information can be found on the home composting page.

What we can collect

Any raw or cooked food waste, including bread, fruit, veg, meat and bones, fish and plate scrapings.

Food waste

What we can't collect

Unfortunately we cannot take

  • oil, fats or liquids
  • any type of plastic carrier bag
  • tea bags (only tea leaves)
  • any packaging – even those marked 'compostable' or biodegradable' – as this takes too long to break down
  • nappies
  • other rubbish.

Never put food waste into carrier bags or black sacks. These do not break down and can ruin the compost.

Starch liners

Streetline will no longer take requests from residents requesting recycling sacks or food waste liners. If your household is included in the service, the starch caddy liners will no longer be delivered to you.

Recycling sacks and starch liners are available to collect from any Idea Store, Cubitt Town Library and Bethnal Green Library. Residents will be able to collect a roll of recycling sacks/starch liners by showing proof of their address such as a utility bill, council tax bill, bank statement or driving licence. 

If you run out of starch liners, food can also be placed in your caddy wrapped in newspaper or you can buy food waste liners from most supermarkets.

If you are disabled, contact us online to request a delivery.

Have we missed you?

Kerbside recycling must be left out before 7am on the day of collection.

If we have, please complete our missed collection form after 3pm.