The Research Hub is managed by Renewable Energy Assurance Ltd (REAL). REAL carries out a range of consumer protection and certification activities, which promote sustainable energy and circular economy principles. Among these activities, REAL administers the Compost Certification Scheme (CCS) and Biofertiliser Certification Scheme (BCS), which enable compost and digestate producers to achieve certification to a set of independent quality Standards (PAS100 and PAS110) and End-of-Waste Frameworks.
REAL has a responsibility to ensure that the CCS and BCS are robust and fit for purpose. For years, REAL has maintained and improved the Schemes in view of evolving regulations and evidence-based research. REAL previously utilised research funded by WRAP (Waste & Resources Action Programme) to inform Scheme improvements. However, WRAP’s engagement with the organics recycling industry has become greatly limited in recent years, resulting in a considerable reduction in new organics sector research.
In view of the potential impacts this might have on Scheme- and industry development, REAL cooperated with industry and the CCS/BCS Technical Advisory Committee to develop an initiative to sponsor continued research and development work within the organics sector. This initiative took shape as the Research Hub.
In January 2019 REAL established the Research Hub with the aim to generate scientific evidence to support innovation and contribute to the development of the Schemes, Standards, and End-of-Waste Frameworks. The Research Hub's 'How It Works' paper, which details the operation of the Hub can be found here.