The HotBin composts food & garden waste
Victoria Scarisbrick

Member Article

Old employer is Hotbin’s new client

HotBin composting has teamed up with Lease-a-Leaf and Sage UK in Gosforth to help speed up the ‘green waste’ process. The aim is to return great compost to the Sage gardens more quickly from their catering and garden waste. The challenge was set after Tony Callaghan was invited back to Sage by David Moorhead in the Environmental Services Team to share his new composting innovation with his old colleagues.

After taking early redundancy from Sage, Tony Callaghan set out to design a composting bin that would overnight reverse how much waste each household was actually sending to landfill. He has spent two years battling with science and technology to create a composting bin that simply lets you put more food and garden waste in.

Lease-a- Leaf manages the extensive gardens on behalf of Sage and has been composting coffee grinds and kitchen peelings from Sage’s onsite restaurant and café along with garden shrubbery.

Philip Davidson said, “We hope to see the reward of our efforts by Spring with our newly installed HotBins. The traditional compost heaps we set up have become a bit unwieldy, the volume is too large as they do not break down as fast as we would like”.

David Moorhead, commented,“ As part of our ongoing commitment to implement beneficial environmental policies we like to introduce local companies to our employees through these environmental awareness days. Inviting Tony back to Sage was an obvious choice! His new HotBin has already had some great reviews from users and there certainly was a lot of interest from Sage’s employees on how it can help them recycle more food and garden waste“.

Tony’s passion for environmental science was reignited after he was told by his wife that if he didn’t sort out his own unruly, overflowing composting bin there would be trouble - she didn’t know then what a challenge she had actually set her husband. However, after a frustrating start, Tony built a prototype out of an old wheelie bin in his garden by going back to the basics of industrial composting engineering science.

Once Tony solved his own problem, he realised he actually had a commercial opportunity on his hands. He was helped by Dr Richard Exley, Head of The Finance for Business North East Proof of Concept (POC) Fund at Northstar Ventures to get his idea tested. To allow AC Innovations to take the HotBin idea into the reality of production, Northstar Ventures invested over £170,000 of POC funds into the company.

Callaghan, Managing Director, AC Innovations Ltd said, “I enjoy solving problems and seeing the impact of the solution. I set out to design a composting bin that solves the three most common home composting problems. Home composting has historically been restricted by the limitation on the types of food you can actually compost, the time it takes to get results and the effects of odour that attracts unwanted visitors.”

“The controlled, constant temperature along with the effective aeration allows the HotBin to effortlessly reduce and recycle food and garden waste into great compost all year round. Lease-a-Leaf will have no problems starting their HotBins in December to ensure great compost out on Spring to put on Sage’s gardens.”

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Victoria Scarisbrick .

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