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About Fairfield: Environmental Policy

Fairfield Materials Management is committed to minimising environmental impacts.

Fairfield was established to introduce sustainable waste management systems and to eliminate existing environmental and social impacts in Greater Manchester. 

Fairfield’s first project is based on New Smithfield Market in Manchester.  The market’s existing waste management system relied on the export of waste material to landfill sites outside of Greater Manchester. 

This archaic system quite literally throws away resources; energy is used to transport waste (both by rail and road) and then the burying of this waste, 95% of which is biodegradable, ultimately contributes to air and water pollution. 

A ‘Sustainable Smithfield’ focuses on waste reduction, re-use and composting or recycling. 

The system challenges individuals to re-evaluate their views on waste material and the environment.  The end product of this system provides a vital source of nutrients that will actively improve soil quality.

The following information demonstrates our environmental commitment throughout the business.

Fairfield has researched, designed and installed a sustainable waste management system for New Smithfield Market.  The business utilises organic material generated on the market. 

Composting through a Vertical Composting Unit enabled the system to be located on the market, reducing the environmental burden of transporting unprocessed material to another site.  A Sustainable Smithfield relies on:


Fairfield strives towards identifying means of eliminating unnecessary waste, especially when these materials can not be re-used, recycling or composted.


Fairfield has assisted the markets in setting up collections of bread baskets for re-use by the bakeries, pallets and some cardboard boxes are returned to traders for re-use.


Plastics are collected on site for recycling additional card that is not composted is bailed and pallets that are not re-usable are set to the markets collection point for recycling.


Fruit, Vegetables and Cardboard are composted through the in-vessel system.  Green Waste (woody) is added to the process to provide the carbon element.


High quality compost is returned to Manchester’s soils.  Compost applications will improve structure, organic matter and nutrient content, drainage and water retention.

Energy Efficiency

The system maximises energy efficiency throughout site.  The VCU was selected because of its footprint in terms of space and energy consumption. 

Fairfield installed a generator and battery set to provide electricity for the site; this will be converted to bio-diesel as soon as a regular supply can be sourced.  Fairfield is also investigating the introduction of alternative energy sources for the site.

Water Management

Fairfield has developed a strong water management system and continues to look at alternative solutions to improve energy efficiency and waste management/minimisation.

Fairfield Materials Management is regulated by the Environment Agency through a waste management licence.  As a regulated site, Fairfield has strict procedures for pollution spills (diesel) on site and these are recorded within the site diary.  Fairfield has produced an Environmental Risk Assessment, all personnel are trained on this, and this training is recorded in their personnel files.

Fairfield has worked with Manchester Universities to undertake Life Cycle Assessments of the operation.  This study will be furthered with a comparative Life Cycle Assessment of sending green waste to another on-farm composting site and sending waste to landfill.

Through the production of compost, Fairfield Materials Management provides a material that actively works to protect and enhance the soils of Manchester from the impacts of global warming.

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