Festival Waste: what you need to know | AMS News

Festival waste: what you need to know

Music festivals generate on average 23,500 tonnes of waste each year in the UK. Can you imagine what that figure would be if we added all the other festivals that are held throughout the year, from food festivals, to country shows and village fetes?

According to a BBC investigation into festival waste, only 32% of the waste is recycled. This is a considerable amount of rubbish going to landfill, making a negative impact on the environment.

As we head into festival season, we want to share some steps that you should take to ensure that your festival leaves no waste behind and what you can do to encourage your festival goers to help out too.

Know what waste there will be

When you are planning your festival, make a list of the types of waste that you expect to be collected.

Waste types that are likely to be found at festivals include

  • Plastics
  • Paper and cardboard
  • Glass
  • Aluminium
  • Food

Once you have made a list, go through it and work out whether each waste type can be recycled or not. If you find that something is not recyclable, ask yourself if there is a way you can make it recyclable. For example, instead of using plastic straws, you could use cardboard ones.

When you know what can and can’t be recycled you can make a plan for the collection of each waste – non recyclables and recyclables. Set up waste collection stations, which have clearly labelled bins for recycling and general waste, across the festival.’

We have a range of wheelie bin sizes for a variety of waste types that can be used to create the perfect rubbish collection stations throughout your festival.

We can also provide RoRo containers and skips to your event. We can deliver the RoRo container or skip required at the beginning and then it can be collected at the end. This reduces the need for waste collections throughout your event and can encourage more recycling. Commonly we provide cardboard waste skips at the back of the festival or event for vendors to dump their waste cardboard. This means you are recycling more and saving space in wheelie bins for the rubbish from the festival goers.

Call our friendly team on 01202 579579 to discuss your event and requirements.

Know how much waste there will be

With a lot of people in one place, your bins are likely to fill up quickly. The amount of non-recyclable plastics is likely to be your biggest problem, with plastic straws, bottles and bags being handed out by vendors.

If your bins overflow, people are likely to stop trying to put their rubbish within the waste container and start leaving it around the bin on the floor, making it easier to be missed and left behind when the bin is eventually emptied.

Solutions to this are simple; make sure that your bins can hold a high volume of waste and are emptied frequently. AMS are able to provide a range of sized bins from 240L which can hold around 4 large bin bags to 1100L which can hold about 20 large bin bags. We are also able to collect and empty the bins as frequently as you may need, helping you to make sure that the bins never truly overflow.

If you would like to know more about how we might be able to help with your waste management at your event, call our expert team on 01202 579579.

Have a team of litter pickers

Have a team of litter pickers working throughout the festival to ensure that rubbish isn’t left lying on the ground. Make sure that your team is knowledgeable about where the most common types of rubbish will be able to go so that your efforts to separate waste are maintained.

Make it easy for guests to put waste in bins

Encourage festival goers to correctly dispose of their waste by setting up high easy to spot rubbish collection stations throughout the venue.

Make sure each bin is clearly labelled, and where possible give examples of what can go in which bin so that guests aren’t left questioning where their waste should go.

As part of our wheelie bin event hire, we label each of the bins with our AMS wheelie bin labels which detail what can go into each bin, meaning you don’t even have to think about it.
Each of our labels are coloured coded, so that it is easy for your attendees to segregate their waste into the correct bins. Our labels also have examples of what can be put into each type of bin, again helping to avoid confusion.

We are also able to provide bespoke labels to put on bins and around the event. To find out more about this, get in touch with us by emailing enquiries@avonmaterialsupplies.co.uk.

Encourage festival goers to do their bit

Another easy way to ensure that your festival reduces its environmental impact and reduces waste left behind is to encourage attendees to do their bit.

Signs throughout the festival

Make it clear where your bins are by putting signs up around the festival to point people in the direction of the nearest rubbish collection station.

Showing that there are plenty of bins around will encourage people to drop rubbish in the bin rather than on the floor.

Ask festival goers to not leave tents behind

We have all seen the images of fields full of empty tents and litter across the floor; it has become a trend for festival goers to leave their tents behind at the end of the festival. But this contributes massively to the waste left behind by festivals and events. Implement a ‘no tents left behind’ rule to reduce the waste left behind.

Have a reusable cup scheme

We dread to think how many cups are used at a festival or fair. Reduce the amount of plastic used, and therefore thrown away, at your event by introducing a reusable cup scheme.

Invite vendors to sell their beverages in a reusable cup and get festival goers to get used to carrying the cups around so that they can be refilled rather than buying a new one, or a plastic one every time they want a drink.

Aim for zero waste to landfill

This means that all the waste collected at your festival is either reused or recycled and none of it is sent to landfill. Not only can this help save costs but it will also ensure your business and event is playing their part in helping the environment.

Avon Material Supplies can help you with this as we will take all the waste collected in our wheelie bins to Canford Recycling Centre who are striving for “zero waste to landfill”. This means that once the waste has left your event, we will continue your efforts of recycling as much as possible.

Need waste management for your festival?

Over the years, we have provided waste management solutions to a few local festivals.

We work with Boomtown, which takes place in Winchester, and provides skips for cardboard waste and glass bottles. These encourage vendors to separate general waste from recycling and increase their recycling.

Last year we also equipped Stompin on the Quomps in Christchurch with 16 litre and 1100 litre wheelie bins for the day. We delivered the bins before the event and collected them at the end of the day, once the event had finished.

If you are planning a festival or event and are in need of a waste management solution, get in touch with us by calling 01202 579579 or emailing enquiries@avonmaterialsupplies.co.uk.

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