Two hawker centres to test food waste recycling systems

Two hawker centres to test food waste recycling systems
PHOTO: National Environment Agency

SINGAPORE - A two-year on-site food waste recycling point has been launched in two locations to test food waste management, the National Environment Agency (NEA) said on Thursday (Jan 21).

The two food waste recycling machines which are at Ang Mo Kio Blk 628 Market and Tiong Bahru Market, are leased from, and maintained by, Eco Wiz (SG) and VRM Operations (Singapore) respectively.

It is estimated that at Ang Mo Kio Blk 628 Market generates about two tonnes of food waste per day, while Tiong Bahru Market generates about three tonnes of food waste per day, with a major proportion of the food waste generated from market slab stalls and table cleaning operations. If the pilot is successful, food waste recycling could reduce up to 80 per cent of the total waste generated from both hawker centres.

As part of the process, covered bins have been provided to the stallholders for the storage of food waste, and table cleaners for the segregation of food waste.

NEA and the appointed food waste recycling companies has conducted training sessions with the stallholders and table cleaners at the two hawker centres on how to segregate food waste at their stalls or during table cleaning. The waste will be transported to the bin centre of each hawker centre where the food waste recycling machines are housed. The food waste is then fed into the machines by a trained staff member from the respective food waste recycling company.

The machine at Ang Mo Kio Blk 628 Market is able to convert one tonne of food waste into water within 24 hours. The water is then used for non-potable purposes such as cleaning the bin centre.

The machine at Tiong Bahru Market grinds up the food waste fed into it and mixes it with micro-organisms, and the resulting mixture is stored on-site in 15 1,000-litre capacity tanks.

When the tanks are full, they are transported to VRM Operations' off-site facility to convert the food waste into bio-fertiliser. The fertiliser is then used for agricultural purposes.

The pilot is expected to conclude in December 2017.

debwong@sph.com.sg

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