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Where Does my Recycling and Waste Go?

Recycling in South Hams collected from households is bulked by material type at Ivybridge Transfer Station.

Each material type is then sent for recycling at the locations below. 

The mixed plastics and metals are sent for further sorting at Kenbury Wood Material Recovery Facility (MRF) just outside Exeter which is operated by Coastal Recycling.

The MRF uses a variety of mechanical and manual sorting techniques to separate the various types of plastics and metals from one another. It also removes any non-recyclables that have mistakenly been placed in the white sack.

The non-recyclable items are bulked and sent for disposal at the Energy from Waste Facility in Plymouth.

MaterialFinal Reprocessor
HDPE PlasticsVeolia, Dagenham
PET PlasticsCleantech, Lincolnshire
Aluminium cans and foilNovelis Recycling, Cheshire
Steel cansBritish Steel, Port Talbot
PaperPalm Recycling, Shropshire
Cardboard (including cartons)Newbury Recycling Ltd, Barnstaple
Glass (including banks)Recresco Ltd, Cwmbran
BatteriesEcobat, West Midlands
Printer CartridgesBCMY Ltd, Littlehampton
Textiles (from banks)Salvation Army


Recyclables are a commodity that can generate an income for the Council which is used to subsidise collections and other services. By separating recycling by type at the kerbside we maintain a better quality product which is easier and less costly to recycle. We work closely with our  contractor, FCC Environment, to ensure that our recyclables, where possible, are kept within the UK.


Food Waste

The contents of the food caddies is tipped by the collection vehicles at Ivybridge Transfer Station. Here it is bulked before being delivered to Andigestion's Anaerobic Digestion Facility in Holsworthy. The material is broken down in a series of sealed, oxygen free tanks to produce methane, a gas used to generate electricity and digestate, a nutrient rich fertiliser used by local farmers.


Garden Waste

Garden waste collected from households is tipped at Torr Quarry Transfer Station before being bulked and delivered to South West Compost, Brixton. Here the garden waste is composted in large heaps which are turned every few weeks to improve breakdown of the waste. The resulting compost is used on local farmland.


Residual Waste

The contents of the grey bins and seagull sacks is tipped by the collection vehicles at Torr Quarry Transfer Station where it is bulked. It is then delivered to MVV's Energy from Waste (EfW) and Combined Heat & Power (CHP) facility in Plymouth. Some waste collected from the west of the district is also delivered direct to MVV. The waste is used as a fuel to heat water into super-heated steam which turns a turbine to create electricity. Leftover heat energy from this process is also used to heat the nearby dockyard and naval base.

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