The Green Apple Environment Awards are an annual international campaign to recognise, reward and promote environmental best practice around the world. This is the second time the Norfolk Master Composter programme has won a Green Apple award, after winning Gold in 2013.
The Master Composter and Love Food Hate Waste programmes are interlinked as an integral part of Norfolk County Council’s waste management policy. Together, the two programmes contribute to the Council’s ambitious target of 1kg reduction in ‘left over waste’ per household per week. They do this by raising awareness amongst the wider public of the issues of food waste and its reduction, and the benefits of home composting to achieve higher rate of diversion from landfill.
Garden Organic’s Master Composter programme was set up to show Norfolk residents how easy it is to compost, highlight the benefits that can be gained from it, and also to tackle some of the issues relating to the disposal of biodegradable waste. Promoting and supporting home composting reduces transportation costs, diverts biodegradable waste from landfill - saving the council, and ultimately the residents, money - cuts the amount of gases produced by landfill sites, and enables residents to become involved in their local community.
The Master Composter programme has been such a success that it was decided to use this model for the Love Food Hate Waste project too.
The schemes have not only allowed the volunteers to build a strong network in the local community, they have also enabled individuals to build relationships with one another, and enhance social inclusion amongst the group and individuals in what is predominantly a very rural county.
As testament to the success of the Master Composter programme, Norfolk County Council has been approached on several occasions to share their knowledge and expertise on how to run a successful Master Composter programme.
It’s the dedication and commitment of the volunteers which continues to make the scheme as successful as it is. It has enabled Norfolk County Council to meet national indicators for reducing residual household waste per head and increase the amount of biodegradable waste that is diverted from landfill.
“We couldn’t be prouder of our Norfolk Master Composter volunteers for winning this Green Apple award.” Commented Sally Gardner, Garden Organic’s Head of Sustainable Communities.
We know the Master Composter programme can deliver real benefits to a community, but it wouldn’t be possible without the time and energy these wonderful volunteers devote to it.