Recycling bins disguised as cows will soon be grazing on waste across the capital, following a trial in Lewisham which proved an un'herd' of success.
In a bid to encourage the general public to recycle and support local authorities in their quest to meet tough landfill diversion targets for municipal waste, market leader in waste containment Taylor, design company Source Communications, and art installation experts Artmongers, have taken the bull by the horns with the creation of 'Cowbins' – attractive waste containers with a Friesian finish.
The first herd of Cowbins, installed at a bring site in New Cross Gate in Lewisham, increased yield of recyclable materials by a phenomenal 61% in just three months. Now Lewisham Council is milking the idea, placing an order for a further 80 Cowbins, with Hackney Council taking on a herd of 200.
Ruminating on the scheme's success, Julian Gaylor, Taylor's UK Sales Manager commented:
“If you capture people's imagination and make recycling attractive and fun, they are far more likely to participate. The Cowbins in New Cross Gate were accompanied by a billboard encouraging people to 'Feed the Cows', and the pavement was painted grass green. As well as increasing recycling, incidents of fly-posting and vandalism, previously a frequent problem, were eliminated.
“The trial revealed that children in particular were inspired by the idea of 'Feeding the Cows'. As a result, many of the Cowbins ordered by Lewisham and Hackney Councils are being purchased for schools,” Julian Gaylor added.
Further to encourage participation in schools, Taylor has developed smaller 'Calfbins' for primary schools. Lewisham Council has already placed an order for 70 Calfbins which are to be rolled out to primary schools across the borough.
Councillor Susan Wise, Cabinet Member for Customer Services in Lewisham, commented:
“The Cowbins are a fantastic idea and a great way to get people to recycle more. They are really eye catching and transform an ordinary and boring bin into something fun and exciting.”