Among other actions, this is achieved through continuous stakeholder engagement and revision of the Scheme documents. Where scientific evidence is needed to improve the schemes, REAL was previously able to rely on existing evidence from research projects funded by WRAP (Waste & Resources Action Programme). WRAP played a vital role within the Organics Recycling Industry through their work with Universities, providing financial and technical support, promoting the quality Standards, and maintaining market confidence.
Unfortunately, WRAP's engagement with the industry is now greatly limited. Presently, there is no other body that provides new, accessible research and evidence for the development of the composting and anaerobic digestion sectors.
Whilst the dynamic within the industry has changed, the need for scientific evidence to support innovation and improve specifications in the Scheme documents has not. Research provides a great influx of knowledge and understanding to the industry, which is essential for continuous development.
REAL therefore considered it fundamental to persue an initiative to generate research funds and sponsor research and development work. In cooperation with the members of the CCS and BCS Technical Advisory Committee (TAC), and in discussion with industry, a mechanism to fulfil these initiatives, in the form of the Research Hub, was established. The Hub has been operating since January 2019.