Give your halloween pumpkins a new lease of life

Calderdale residents are being encouraged to recycle their halloween pumpkins.
Calderdale residents are being encouraged to recycle their halloween pumpkins.

Jack-o’-lanterns won’t give residents of Calderdale any nightmares this halloween thanks to the borough’s food waste collection service.

More than one million pumpkins are bought in Britain every year, but with 99% of these being made into spooky decorations for halloween, many of the country’s pumpkins are destined for landfill sites.

However, as Calderdale is the only borough in West Yorkshire with a food waste collection service, residents can ensure their leftover pumpkins will be recycled into something reusable long after the ghosts and ghouls disappear.

The council’s food waste collection service has been operated by recycling and resource management company SITA UK since 2009 - they provide 95,000 properties with specialist containers known as food caddies for the disposal of left over food.

Bio-degradable bags made from corn starch which break down with the food waste are also provided.

Paul Taylor, Senior Contract Manager at SITA UK is urging residents of the Borough to take advantage of this service once the trick or treaters have gone.

“With Halloween just around the corner, many residents of Calderdale will be waking up on the 1st November with unwanted pumpkins. So instead of just throwing them away with the rest of your waste, why not do your bit for the environment and put them in your food caddies,” he said.

“This not only keeps your redundant Jack-o’-lanterns away from landfill, but it is also a cheaper alternative for you and your local council.”

Coun Scott Benton, Calderdale Council’s Cabinet Member for Corporate Asset and Facilities Management, Housing and Environment, added: “We have seen a massive improvement in our recycling rates over the last few years and I’d like to thank Calderdale residents for helping us to achieve this.

“We encourage people to keep recycling their leftover food – by doing this, we can all play our part in reducing the waste going to landfill, which is better for our environment and frees up Council money for other services.

“Recycled food waste also makes a great soil conditioner for improving land. People are urged to get into the habit of recycling every week – there’s no need to wait until your containers are full before putting them out for collection.”