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Inside  a Biffa anaerobic digestion plant

Jargon Buster

Ever wondered what a bulk carrier is? Confused about the difference between MRF and DMR? We've got you covered with our jargon buster and bin range.


  • WTN - Waste Transfer Note

    A Duty of Care Waste Transfer Note (WTN) is a legal requirement that must be completed when waste is transferred from one party to another. It ensures that waste can be traced from production to disposal and can be checked by the Environment Agency or local authority at any time.

  • Lift Rate

    The lift rate is the charge for us to collect your rubbish.

  • Rental Charge

    This is the rental charge for supplying, delivering and placing a bin on your site.

  • Duty of Care

    This charge is to facilitate and enforce the Duty of Care Regulations of 1991 – these regulations require all waste to be categorised and every transfer of waste to be recorded, which is why we require and rely on Waste Transfer Notes.

Types of Waste

  • WEEE – Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment

    WEEE includes most products that have a plug or need a battery, such as:

    • Fridges
    • Cookers
    • Radios
    • TVs
    • Electric drills
    • Smoke detectors

    As a result of this complex mix of product types and materials, some of which are hazardous (including arsenic, cadmium, lead and mercury and certain flame retardants) WEEE recycling poses a number of health risks that need to be adequately managed. At Biffa we’ve got a team of experts that are trained in how to safely deal with WEEE waste.

  • Single Stream Recycling

    Our single stream recycling service deals with large volumes of a particular kind of waste, e.g. paper, food, plastic, metal or wood. We can collect and recycle the stream, minimising your costs and enhancing your environmental performance. Find out more.

  • DMR – Dry Mixed Recycling

    Dry Mixed Recycling (or DMR) is the term used to describe waste that hasn’t been contaminated by things such as food or garden waste. Typical components of DMR are plastic, cardboard, paper or glass. The mixed waste is usually taken to a Materials Recycling Facility (MRF) where it is separated and recycled.

Jargon Buster for Containers

  • Containers

    IBC - Intermediate Bulk Container IBCs are secure, caged containers that are suitable for a variety of hazardous wastes including sludge, slurries and chemicals. More information can be found here.

    Bulk Carrier Bulk carriers are part of our container range. They are suitable for carrying large volumes of waste including heavy and bulky materials. They are generally used within industrial manufacturing and construction sectors. Learn more about bulk carriers.

    FEL - Front End Loader An FEL is part of our container range. These bins are larger and most commonly used by businesses with a high volume of waste. Front End Loading waste collection units are lockable steel bins with easily operated lids, and are emptied with specialised vehicles.

    1100 The 1100 litre bin is part of our large wheelie bin range. They can contain general waste, paper, cardboard or dry mixed recycling. This bin has an easily operated lockable lid and also has four castors with brake control all made from steel.

    660 The 660 litre container is also part of our large wheelie bin range. As with the 1100l, the 660l can contain general waste, paper, cardboard or dry mixed recycling and has the same safety features such as a lockable lid.

    240 The 240 litre bin is part of the standard wheelie bin range – it’s made for general waste, dry mixed recycling, food wastes or glass.

    120 The 120 litre container is one of our standard wheelie bins. It can contain general waste, dry mixed recycling, food wastes or glass.

    Waste Safe The Waste Safe is a lockable container made from galvanised steel and was designed to handle hazardous materials. These include adhesives, waste electrical items, packaged mineral oil and resins/sealants. Find out more about Waste Safes.

    Waste Safe Mini The Waste Safe Mini forms part of our container range and was designed specifically for hazardous waste. Contents can include bulbs and UV lamps, batteries, aerosols, oil filters and paint tins. Learn more about waste safe minis.

    Drum A Drum is another container designed for the disposal of hazardous waste, particularly liquid wastes (oils, paints etc.) and solid waste such as batteries and aerosols. There are 4 different sizes within the drums range: 30l, 60l, 110l and 205l.

  • IRM - Integrated Resource Management

    Our Integrated Resource Management (IRM) service can help large businesses ensure they are fully compliant with waste regulations. We work with progressive, complex organisations to minimise their environmental footprint and significantly reduce waste management costs. Find out more about IRM.

  • ESOS - Energy Saving Opportunity Scheme

    The Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme is EU legislation which requires that large companies carry out energy audits. Large companies are those considered to have 250 members of staff, or a turnover of €50 million (approx. £44m Jan 2017). The energy audit includes a review of overall operations, use of transport and the amount of energy used per employee – all with a view to identify energy saving opportunities. Find out more about ESOS.

  • PRN - Packaging Recovery Note

    PRNs are part of the Producer Responsibility Obligations (Packaging Waste) Regulations 2007. A PRN is a document providing evidence that waste packaging material has been recycled into a new product. If you’re a member of Biffpack, our packaging waste compliance scheme, PRNS are purchased and dealt with on your behalf. Find out more about PRNs.

  • AD - Anaerobic Digestion

    The process of anaerobic digestion provides a source of renewable energy by breaking down food waste and producing bio gas (a mixture of methane and carbon dioxide). Bio gas can then be used to generate electricity and heat. Watch our short video.

  • In-Vessel Composting

    In-vessel composting is a method of treating food and garden waste mixtures. The composting takes place in an enclosed environment to monitor and control temperature. Systems include silos, rotating drums and enclosed halls.

  • MBT - Mechanical & Biological Treatment

    Mechanical & Biological Treatment is a combination of sorting and treatment technologies including the separation of materials for recycling, refuse-derived fuel (RDF) production or anaerobic digestion. Our MBT facility in West Sussex is designed to divert over 75% of incoming material into a resource. Find out more about MBT.

  • MRF - Materials Recycling Facility

    MRFs are specialised plants that recover recyclables from general waste, and separate and prepare the materials for sale to manufacturers. We have two super MRFs in the UK which process a combined c.400,000 tonnes of dry mixed recyclable waste every day. Our Edmunton MRF is now partly powered by solar energy. Read more here.

  • Tankering

    Tankering is the process of moving and safely disposing of liquid waste, e.g. sludge. Tankering is one of our dedicated services within the construction industry.


  • Biofuel

    Biofuel is a type of fuel produced through biological processes such as anaerobic digestion and agriculture – it’s a more environmentally friendly alternative to fossil fuels which involve geological processes. One of our long-term objectives at Biffa is to minimise environmental impact whilst striving from sustainability. As part of this, we source Used Cooking Oil from our commercial customers to create 100% biodiesel (B100). Since 2012, over 2.3 million litres of B100 biodiesel directly replaced fossil diesel on our Arun, Portsmouth and Surrey Heath contracts (as of July 2015). Learn more on biofuel collections here.

  • RDF - Refuse Derived Fuel

    RDF is a type of fuel produced from different types of waste, e.g. household solid waste or industrial waste. We’re one of the largest producers of RDF in the UK, delivering more than 2,000 tonnes to energy recovery facilities every year. Read more about the process of RDF.

  • LFG - Landfill Gas

    Landfill gas is a natural by-product of landfills that occurs as the materials decompose. Landfill gas is a fuel that can be utilised to generate electricity, and landfill sites can be a major source of renewable energy production in the UK. Left untreated, landfill gas can be dangerous to the environment – the main components are carbon dioxide and methane, both greenhouse gases.