Thursday 1st March 2018

Recycling at Sumac

Alternate Thursdays

By minimising the waste generated we aim to process our recycling on alternate Thursdays, ready for fortnightly collection on Fridays - can you help?


Take away for your own use,
or take from here to recycling facilities elsewhere

A bin for recyclables is kept inside the Gladstone Street entrance.

Glass, plastic bottles, cans, paper & cardboard can go out for council collection on alternate Thursday evenings, but everyone can help by thinning out the box here to the bins to the right of the gate.

Jam jars may be taken from here to be refilled with locally grown fruit, jams and chutney and clean takeaway containers, margerine tubs are needed for surplus Peoples Kitchen meals.

Tetrapaks are opened out, flattened and filed in blue trays on the outside steps down to Veggies. Check out our tetrapak craft and recycling info.

Note that Lost Property is regularly recycled, either through the Free Shop at Sumac, at in-house jumble sales, at free shops elsewhere, or to charity shops. If you leave something at Sumac, return ASAP to hope to find it where you left it, before it gets moved on.

Sumac runs a free shop, as do many squatted venues, for the free exchange of clothing. If anyone is going through Ripley, they could thin out surplus from the free shop to the Expectations Charity Shop, Butterley Hill, Ripley, DE5 3LT, who raise funds for Brinsley Animal Rescue.

For everything else see our A - Z Recycling Guide or read on for the "12 Rs of waste reduction".

To save useful items from going to landfill sites or incineration, join Freecycle Nottingham. Visit recycle-more find your nearest recycling site. Thanks for the link back from who have more info recycling facilities in Nottingham.

Babel Fish Translation
Nottingham City.
Ph: 0115 915 2000 . Email: (Remove the NoSpam filter from the address)
[ Map ] Accessible entrance at back door at 73 Beech Avenue

The 3 12 R's of waste reduction

and counting ...


- We refuse to suppport the throw away cuture.
- Throughout the McLibel Trial we co-ordinated 'Operation Send-It-Back', to highlight the mountains of waste generated by the fast food industry, including you-know-McWho.
- Through our influence many events now insist on recyclable packing and compostable plates and cutlery. Commendable as this is we still prefer to minimise or eliminate such waste where ever possible. There is still much to be done in the mainstream, including the waste created by the use of disposable cleaning materials.


- By making our own foods from basic ingredients, and by buying in bulk, we are able to minimise the packaging coming in to us.
- We have had a minimal packaging policy since 1984
- Our use of a single piece of kitchen towel as packaging is legendary.
- During the 2007 season we aquired 1500 durable beakers for a song, enabling us to serve fair trade fruit juice in beakers from litres cartons, or organic apple juice from concentrate, thereby reducing further the amount of tetra-pac waste. (square metre per litre)


- As well as the introduction of re-usable beakers for soft drinks we have pioneered the use or proper mugs, (sometime with a returnable deposit, often just on trust), a policy that is readily accepted by our customers. Most green and ethical festival cafes now follow this lead. With 6 billion polystyrene cups thrown away in the UK each year, we are happy that we have bought none of them for our customers to have to dispose of. (Some were donated to us years ago. As we get thru about 10 a year they should last 100 years in our store room - they probably last longer when thrown into landfill!


- Wherever possible our more practical volunteers maintain our trailers, cooking equipement and vehicles to extend their useful life.


- To reduce the impact of computer manufacture many of the PCs at Veggies and the Sumac Centre are refurbished. Rehome
- To save useful items from going to landfill sites or incineration, join >Freecycle Nottingham


- Tetra recycling
- S.Carrot boxes
- carrier bags


- The food value of leftovers makes a useful contribution to reducing the impact of the pet food industry, generating customer loyalty amongst our rescued 4-legged friends!


- waste oil from our kitchen, for example from cooking onion bhajis, is saved, to be cleaned and reused as motor fuel.


- The food value of vegetable trimmings is reclaimed at the Community Composting Project at the Sumac Centre to replenish the goodness of the soil in our vegan-organic garden.
- The paper napkins that are the key element of our minimal packaging policy, add a useful carbon fix to this compost.


- With the recent provision of tetra-pac recycling facilities in Nottingham (following Veggies lobbying), many of our customers can now recycle all the packaging that they get from Veggies, including bottles and cans, except the straw on the soya drinks!


- So what's left? We struggle to think of anything that has go in the bin. Perhaps the straw on the side of the drink cartons (but plastic is recyclable) or the cellophane sleeve it comes in, but being made from cellulose (plant fibre) it should be compostable - testing continues.


- Our mission is to protect and conserve the local and global environment, and the communities that depend on its survival. We trust that you share our concern and respect for all the life that shares our fragile planet.

A to Z of Waste

Based on a guide by the University of Nottingham. Rewrite in pregress for Veggies/Sumac - you can help by writing a line or two about any material listed or missing - please send your suggestions.

There are many different types of waste, but the vast majority has the potential to be reused or recycled. The following table is a simple guide of what items are usually discarded as waste and the best way to dispose of them:


Aerosols = Kerbside collection in household recycling bin.


Batteries = Special collection backs available from council to ccput household batteries out with the fortnightly recycling collection. Or they can be returned to Sainsbury's FREEPOST ANG20589, PO Box 137, WYMONDHAM, NR9 5BR. Chapeltown Green) is probably the most ethical supplier of rechargeable batteries. They also have details of more recycling freepost addresses.

Books = Shared through Sumac's Free Book Exchange shelf, Community Circles and Jumble Sales at Sumac. ExLibris: The Masked Booksellers collect books to resell for charities such as the Refugee Forum. It would be also good to also engage with the Bookcrossing network.

Books beyond further use can be up-cycled into these handy desktidy hedgehogs, available from


Cardboard at Sumac may be ripped up and added to compost heap - the carbon content balances the food waste. Good clean boxes are reused for Veggies deliveries (we use no new boxes). Otherwise cardboard is included in the fortnightly recycling bin.

Cling film (cellophane) = This needs to be disposed of in your refuse bin. Veggies never uses cling film, but we would be pleased to receive to receive clean takeaway containers, margerine tubs etc for reuse.

Clothes = Some are exchanged through Sumac's Free Shop. Otherwise clothes and textiles can be placed in the textile banks found at some recycling sites, to be sent overseas or sold to raise funds for charity.

Computer Equipment = Sumac volunteers refurbish computers for our office use and public internet acess. Surplus equipement is best shared via FreecycleNottingham.

CDs and DVDs = can go in the Free Shop, charity shops or be sent to a company for a free, secure recycling service.

Confidential papers = Veggies has a paper shredder, the output of which is used for rescued animal bedding.


Drink Cans = Drink and Food cans go in the fortnightly recycling collection.


Envelopes = Envelopes in good condition are reused for mail order mailings or otherwise go in the fortnightly recycling collection.


Furniture = Good quality, usable furniture can be collected by Familiy First for further use by local families and individuals in need.


Glass = Goes in fortnightly recycling collection.


Household Items = At a pinch items may be left inside or outside the gate for others to take away, as seems to be the tradition in Nottingham. Or give them freely at FreecycleNottingham or take to Familiy First for further use by local families and individuals in need.


Junk Mail = To stop junk mail - phone 0845 703 4599 or log onto


Kidstuff = Family First collect children’s clothing and equipment and offer them to local families who may not be able to afford to buy new. Playworks run a Scrapstore for recycled arts and crafts materials


Lead batteries = Try using re-chargeable batteries. Car batteries need to go to a household waste site.

Low Energy Bulbs = (and fluorescent lights) contains up to 5mg of highly toxic Mercury. Must be taken separately to household waste sites. Or send Osram bulbs for recycling to: OSRAM Freepost, CSC, Panasonic UK Ltd Panasonic House, Willoughby Road BRACKNELL, Berkshire RG12 8FP.


Magazines and Catalogs = go in fortnightly recycling collection.

Metal Waste = Scrap metal collectors regularly tour the area, but do not invite them into theyard.

Mobile Phones = Request a special mobile phone envelope to support Animal Aid.


Newspaper = goes in fortnightly recycling collection.


Organic Waste = Composted to return tasty goodness to Sumac's Garden.


Paper = Paper printed on one side is re-used for our computer printers. Our Community Print Workshop used only paper made from post-consumer waste.

Plastic = We need clean takeaway containers, margerine tubs to share Peoples Kitchen meals with those unable to get to Sumac. Plastic bottles go in fortnightly recycling collection.

Q = The recyclethis website has tips on recycling 'q-tip cotton buds' and lots of other obscure and difficult materials!


Telephone Directories = go in fortnightly recycling collection.

Toner and Printer Cartridges = To minimise waste we either refill our laser printer with a kit from U Refill Toner Ltd or purchase reconditioned cartridges from Nottingham-based CartridgeMaster, who take back empty cartridges for re-use.


Waste Oil = used oil from our kitchen is saved, to be cleaned and reused as motor fuel. We would be pleased to support anyone able to set up a waste oil filtering system at Sumac.

Wood waste = Several local households have wood burners - a carbon-neutral heating system when associated with tree planting schemes, such as the Forest Fields Orchard.

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