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China: Restaurant scraps being used as pig feed

Many of Beijing's restaurants are ignoring government guidelines on the disposal of food scraps and instead mixing it with other rubbish and selling it to private people as pig feed.

This is according to a research carried out by a non-government environmental protection organisation, Green Beagle.

"The food waste produced by the capital's restaurants is supposed to be sent to the food waste treatment factory at Gao'antun in the north-eastern part of Beijing or Nangong in the south to transform it into organic fertilizer," said Chen Liwen, who headed the research. "However, the current situation is far from satisfactory."

Chen said restaurants in Beijing produce at least 600 tonnes of kitchen waste daily, but the two food waste treatment factories in the capital only receive about 100 tonnes.

The research began in February and surveyed 60 restaurants in the city's Chaoyang district.

The violators are not limited to small restaurants deemed poor in quality, Chen said. She said even some of the established, well-known restaurants habitually break the rules.

Chen said it is easy enough to mix kitchen waste with the relatively large supply of household garbage in the city without getting caught.

"Since the restaurant will not be punished no matter what ... few restaurants are strictly abiding by the guideline," Chen said.

Though some government staff do check how some restaurants work from time to time, the monitoring is still too poor, Chen noted

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