Newtown based social entrepreneur Adam Kennerley, CEO of the innovative Cwm Harry food waste collection and composting business, based in the town’s Vastre Industrial Estate, took Welsh expertise to Coventry on 9th September when he spoke at a national conference “Making Zero Waste Happen”. The conference keynote speaker was Caroline Spelman, Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, and representatives from central and local government, multinationals, universities, environmental bodies, businesses and community groups from across the UK gathered together to look at the economic and environmental contribution that using resources efficiently and managing waste effectively can make on a national level, as well as to communities and individual householders.
You may wonder why some products can’t be recycled when you’ve finished with them, and Cwm Harry are supporting the development of the UK’s first Zero Waste Research Centre which was launched at the conference and will be located in Coventry. Waste is a design problem, and the Zero Waste Research Centre uses people’s concerns about what they can’t recycle or reuse to drive industrial responsibility. The starting point for the centre is that if a product can’t be reused, repaired, refurbished, recycled or composted it needs to be redesigned or taken out of the system.
Cwm Harry are running their own Zero Waste Presteigne and Norton pilot, funded by Welsh Government and Powys Zero Waste Action. Over 70% of what was previously called waste is now being turned into a valuable resource, but householders are frustrated by the packaging that they still have to put in the bin – crisp packets, polystyrene trays, foil pouches for cat food and drinks. In partnership with the Ecodesign Centre, Cardiff, Cwm Harry are going to find out why manufacturers make things this way and what can be done to redesign them.