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20 years of intensive sorting of food waste in one of Italy’s pioneering municipalities


On October 4th 2018 the Municipality of Sommacampagna is organising its 20-year anniversary for having introduced in 1998 the kerbside collection of recyclables, focusing on food waste, and applying PAYT (pay as you throw) charges. The event will be attended by former MoE (Mr. Ronchi) and national and regional decision-makers to discuss the next steps about consistent MSW management according to the new targets set by the EU Circular Economy Package.

For those WBA colleagues and members who want to practise their Italian vocabulary about food waste recycling, like a good drink (the beautiful Custoza vineyards are part of Sommacampagna’s countryside) and enjoy the mild autumn days at Lake Garda, this is your opportunity!

A link to the event site can be found here and and you can register here


About MSW management in Sommacampagna: the 15,000-inhabitant municipality is listed  among the pioneers in introducing kerbside collection and PAYT in Italy. The municipality started food waste collection in 1997/8, promoting home composting in low-density areas and diverting food waste from disposal to recycling (i.e. AD and composting). The recycling rate immediately boomed from 20 to 67% of all MSW managed and today Sommacampagna sorts about 84% of all MSW produced.

Intensive sorting schemes have been successfully applied in Italy since 1995/1997 and the backbone of all approaches was (and is) the effective diversion of biowaste (and particularly of food waste) from the residual waste stream, and the recycling of organics in industrial AD and composting facilities; this important sector, managing about 6.2 million tpa of organic waste, is represented by the Italian Biogas and Composting Association (

by Marco Ricci

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