Salford University

The University of Salford in partnership with ARAMARK


As one of the largest organisations in the Greater Manchester Region with over 20,000 students, 2,800 staff and a land holding of 70 hectares in Salford, the University of Salford recognises the impact it has on a local, regional and global environment and is committed to playing its part in making the world a more sustainable, responsible and equitable place.

The University has a number of catering facilities, managed and operated by ARAMARK, dotted around the campus.


ARAMARK is a member of Business in the Community (BITC) and follow their overall guidelines, which fall under their Workplace, Marketplace, Environment and Community streams.

Both Salford University and ARAMARK are serious about sustainability and are continuously working towards reducing their impact on the environment.


The problem

Prior to the food waste trial starting in February 2007, there were eight 1100 litre commercial wheeled bins that were emptied daily at the Maxwell Campus alone.


The solution

Salford ran a trial at Maxwell Campus with Tidy Planet’s A500 in the spring of 2007 – the smallest in the range of Rocket® Composters; fully automatic and measuring 2.0m long x 0.7m wide x 1.4m high, it has a maximum capacity of 600 litres of mixed waste per week.

The A500 Rocket® proved its effectiveness during the trial period and the test results from the State Veterinary Service (Animal Health) are clear of pathogens. The University of Salford is the first university site to achieve ABPR approval for composting their own food wastes.

An A700 Rocket® joined the ranks at Salford, at the Frederick Road Campus, in April 2008 – one level up in the range of Rocket® Composters; fully automatic and measuring 3.0m long x 0.9m wide x 1.6m high, it has a maximum capacity of 1400 litres of mixed waste per week.

The results

The two Rocket® Composters work in tandem to recycle around 57 tonnes of food waste per year – saving all the associated methane emissions, reducing landfill waste, cutting the waste disposal costs for the University and, as a bonus, producing nutrient rich compost to be used on the University’s grounds. With the increase in recycling of food wastes and dry recyclates, the number of bins required reduced to three, rather than eight 1100s at the Maxwell Campus.


University of Salford and Aramark Championing On-site Food Waste Composting

Graeme Holland, Estates and Facilities Manager for Salford, says:
“The landfill charges were a major factor in our decision to look for more recycling routes. Food waste was becoming more and more of an issue. It was a blot on our landscape and the smell was attracting vermin to the skips in between collections.

“I think it’s brilliant, the best thing is all food waste, cooked and uncooked, meat and fish can be composted on-site which is fantastic for solving our problems. When we show people the finished product they are amazed by the consistency and quality of the compost.


“All the compost is matured and used around the University grounds for landscaping which enables us to cut down on buying trailer loads of compost, saving us money and again reducing transport related CO2 emissions.

“We are so impressed with the Rocket® system, we are looking at expanding food waste recycling across the whole University – we have nine food outlets and, with ARAMARK now fully onboard, we might be needing another Rocket® …or two!”

Val Carter, CR Director for ARAMARK says:
“As far as we are concerned the Rocket® Composter is a great solution to this increasing problem. With pressure from the EU on the UK Government to reduce waste from going to landfill, the introduction of the Rocket® Composter at the Salford site means we’re ahead of the game. We are in discussions with Tidy Planet to expand on-site food waste composting to some of our other client sites.”