Raymond Blanc’s eatery to use composting technology

13 November 2019 by Grace Coleman
blog author

A Michelin-starred luxury hotel and restaurant owned by celebrity chef Raymond Blanc is to use new technology to compost 94 per cent of its annual food waste.

The Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat’ Saisons, in Oxfordshire, has invested in the A1200 Rocket Composter, from the waste solution provider Tidy Planet. The composter, capable of processing up to 2.5 tonnes of food per week, is expected to be installed at the restaurant in December.

Belmond Le Manoir first piloted the use of the Rocket Composter at Oxford Brookes University, before investing, when it partnered with CESHI (Centre for Environmental Studies in the Hospitality Industry) to ensure dealing with food waste on site was manageable.

The Rocket Composter will process the kitchen’s food and other compostable waste including horticultural matter and will be situated next to the restaurant’s gardens.

But before food enters the composter, a Gobi 400 Food Waste Dryer (also from Tidy Planet) will be used to pre-treat the waste, including post-dining plate scrapings, single-use plastic replacements, paper hand towels and poultry bones.

The compost will then be used in the hotel’s herb and vegetable gardens and orchards to grow organic produce for the restaurant and the Raymond Blanc Cookery and Gardening Schools.

It is expected to process around 50 tonnes of organic waste per year – generating 25-30 tonnes of compost and reducing the general waste on-site by 13 per cent.

Rhodri Williams, Belmond Le Manoir’s health, safety, security and environment manager, said: “Wherever possible, every aspect of Belmond Le Manoir is driven by ethical and environmental values. The Rocket Composter will not only enable us to implement a closed-loop system for our organic food wastes, but it will change our recycling and food waste culture, helping to further foster sustainable best practice.

“Given our organic and nose-to-tail approach to the food we use at Belmond Le Manoir, there’s never much left over from our customers’ plates that you could call ‘waste’ as such.

“With all produce sourced freshly and locally – or from our on-site gardens – there are primarily a lot of inedible peelings, stalks and offcuts.

“Currently, we send all our food waste for anaerobic digestion (AD) but having an on-site solution will enable us to independently treat all our waste at source and harness it as a valuable resource. As a result, we also expect a £9,000 saving in off-site disposal fees during the first year of the composter’s installation.

“We take our environmental responsibility very seriously, and the new tech further cements our commitment to sustainable luxury.”

Huw Crampton, sales manager at Tidy Planet, said: “Our drying technology will create a fine particle, homogenous product that can be composted on site, whereas without this process, the waste Belmond Le Manoir produces would have otherwise been rejected by their current disposal route of AD, or would have been extremely difficult to compost on site.

“We’re very passionate about empowering organisations all over the world to manage their own organic wastes and being able to support Belmond Le Manoir in the next chapter of its sustainability venture is very exciting.”