The best waste management companies in London

If you’re a startup owner based in London, read our guide to help you find the best ways to manage your commercial waste, including providers, services and more

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As the UK’s capital and largest city, London produces a lot of waste.

And that means your business has loads of choices for getting rid of that waste – from just using the local council to selecting from a variety of expert private providers.

We’ll tackle the pros and cons of using your local council later but, based on our 20 years of small business experience, here’s our pick of the best waste management companies in London:

  • Divert – Divert is our No. 1 overall choice for small business waste management, and also comes out on top in London. We love its clear fixed prices, online booking, and eco-friendly approach.
  • Biffa – Biffa is a great choice for larger SMEs, it’s one of the UK’s largest waste management companies and has decades of experience.
  • Enviro waste – Enviro waste leads the way when it comes to eco-friendly waste disposal in London, and recycles 92% of commercial waste.

As well as giving you the lowdown on London’s leading waste management companies, this guide will also discuss how much it might cost to dispose of your commercial waste, and the cost of commercial recycling in London.

We’ll also dig into how to choose the right waste management company for your needs, and examine whether you need a separate provider for each type of waste your business produces.

If you want some expert assistance finding the right provider for your waste management needs, then just tell us a bit about what you’re looking for and you’ll get bespoke quotes from some of the top waste management companies operating in London.

Or, read on to learn loads more about your options for commercial waste management in London.

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Best waste management companies in London

Here’s our overview of London’s leading waste management providers:

0 out of 0
Best for
Price from

Divert

Biffa

Enviro Waste

Flexibility for businesses that need all kinds of waste removed in an environmentally conscious way

Businesses needing maximum waste management coverage across the UK

Eco-friendly waste disposal

£59.99 for office rubbish removal

Doesn't publish set price plans, instead provides personalised quotes

70kg waste load = £107 + VAT

You can find more information on each of these companies below:

Divert

Divert waste management logo

Pros
  • London and national coverage
  • Clear fixed prices that include labour
  • Environmentally friendly
  • Excellent customer service
Cons
  • Doesn't handle construction waste

Locations in London

Divert offers an extensive range of services throughout London.

Types of waste collected

Divert can collect the following in London:

  • Clinical waste
  • Glass disposal
  • WEEE waste
  • Cardboard waste
  • DMR (Dry Mixed Recycling)
  • General waste

It also offers services tailored to individual business sectors, including office waste, retail waste, restaurant waste, industrial waste, and automotive waste.

Cost

Divert’s fixed price waste collections start from £59.99.

What kind of company is Divert best suited to?

Divert led the way in our overall ranking of best waste management companies, and for good reason.

The company offers a distinctly 21st century approach to waste management, with clear fixed prices (that include labour), an online booking system, and an eco-friendly approach that aims to divert waste from landfill.

This makes Divert a great fit for most SMEs, although construction businesses may want to look elsewhere as the company doesn’t offer a specialist construction waste service.

Biffa

biffa

Pros
  • Offers free waste audits
  • Dedicated London depots
  • Multiple types of waste collected
Cons
  • Limited coverage in West London
  • Depot coverage and geographical locations don’t always match up – e.g. the east London depot also covers some of south London

Locations in London

Biffa offers its services in all 32 London boroughs and has four London depots:

  • North London
  • South London
  • East London
  • Central London

Types of waste collected

Biffa’s extensive range of services includes:

  • General waste collection
  • Dry Mixed Recycling (DMR)
  • Food waste collection
  • Single stream recycling
  • Hazardous waste collection and treatment
  • Medical waste removal
  • Unplanned waste removal
  • Asbestos waste disposal

Cost

Doesn't publish set price plans, instead provides personalised quotes.

What kind of company is Biffa best suited to?

With decades of experience (the company was founded in 1912) and a wide range of specialist services, Biffa is an attractive option for larger SMEs with more complex needs.

These businesses are also often in a good position to benefit from Biffa’s free waste audits, where the company shares its expert knowledge on how to manage waste and the disposal process.

Similarly, businesses with multiple sites in London could find real value in Biffa’s extensive operations in the capital.

Enviro Waste

Enviro waste new logo

Pros
  • Eco-friendly waste disposal
  • Range of waste clearance services offered, including hazardous and confidential waste
  • Extensive coverage across London
  • Based in the capital
  • One-off collections
Cons
  • One-off collections, not ongoing services
  • No services offered for certain types of waste e.g. food, clinical, mixed/single stream recycling

Locations in London

Based in East London, Enviro Waste offers one-off waste clearance collections in multiple districts across the capital, plus some Essex (IG) postcodes too.

Types of waste collected

Enviro Waste offers the following waste clearance services:

  • Office furniture
  • Hazardous waste
  • Electronic recycling
  • White goods recycling
  • Tyre recycling
  • Data destruction
  • Confidential document destruction

Cost

Enviro Waste has a clear, easy to understand pricing structure. It charges based on loads per cubic yard. Prices start at £107 plus VAT for one cubic yard, and increase from there based on the amount of waste that needs to be disposed of.

What kind of company is Enviro Waste best suited to?

With a clear emphasis on recycling and environmentally conscious waste management, Enviro Waste is sure to appeal to any London-based small business that has sustainability high on its agenda.

Plus, office-based businesses and any other companies that produce a lot of confidential paper and digital waste could be drawn to Enviro Waste’s specialist services.

Best of the rest

Here are some other providers you might want to consider:

  • Keenan Recycling – A food waste recycling specialist
  • Veolia – French multinational, offers specialist coffee cup recycling service
  • CheaperWaste – Offers quick and easy set up for small businesses
  • Business Waste – 24/7 customer support and a dedicated account manager

How to choose the right waste management company for your business

Here are our five top tips to help you find the right waste management company for your London-based business:

  • Congestion charge – When considering a provider, it’s really important to check whether congestion charge is included in the stated price or if it’s charged separately.
  • Coverage – Make sure that the location or locations of your businesses are within the potential provider’s network.
  • Eco-friendly waste management – Where possible, it’s a good idea (from both an environmental and financial perspective) to use recycling and other eco-friendly waste disposal processes. It’s therefore important to look into what providers do with the waste once it’s collected, so ensure this is part of your selection process.
  • Reviews – To get a more accurate idea of the service different waste management companies offer, find out what other customers are saying about them. The easiest way to do this is by searching online, but you could also reach out to other small business owners for recommendations.
  • Future needs – Don’t just think about the waste disposal your business requires now, but also consider how those needs might change as your company grows. For example, will you need any additional types of waste to be collected, and will the same provider be able to handle that?

Should I use local council services to dispose of my commercial waste in London?

The obvious choice for your commercial waste collection needs is to just use the local council services in the borough where you are based. However, while this approach has its benefits, there are also some key drawbacks:

Using your local council pros and cons

Pros
  • Local councils are often cheaper than commercial providers, and it can be easier to find prices
  • Experienced providers
  • You may already be familiar with using your local council for domestic waste collection
  • The service provided is specific to your local area
  • If you run a home-based business, then you can use the same provider for both domestic and commercial collections
Cons
  • If your business has multiple sites across different boroughs, you may need to coordinate collections with several councils
  • Not all waste collections are run by the councils themselves — some use third-party commercial providers
  • Waste collection is only one aspect of their services and not a specialism

Using a private company pros and cons

Pros
  • Specialist, dedicated services for commercial waste collection
  • Some providers may offer industry-leading services
  • Flexible collections
  • May offer you more choices on how and when the waste is collected
  • Charges are often based on your business specifically
  • Services available across the capital
Cons
  • Prices are often provided on an individual quote basis

Which option is best for me?

To figure out which option is right for your business, you really need to think about your particular circumstances and what you’re looking for from your waste management provider.

For example, if you run your business from home, then you’re probably already familiar with your local council and so it could make sense to use them for your commercial waste needs as well.

Similarly, if you’re just looking for one-off collections, particularly for bulky items or green waste, then it could be easier to contact your local council as and when required.

However, a private company might be the better option if your business needs ongoing collections – particularly if you think the amount or type of waste you need to dispose of may change, as you can have the services tailored to your company’s requirements.

Plus, as commercial waste companies generally specialise in this service, you can take advantage of their industry-specific knowledge and advice.

As well as this, you can shop around and compare a number of waste management companies across the capital to find the right provider for your small business. In contrast, your business location usually determines which local council you can use.

How much does commercial waste disposal cost in London?

How much you can expect to pay for London commercial waste disposal depends on whether you’re using your local council or a private provider.

Local council costs

Many local councils publish their prices online, here’s an approximate estimate of average costs for different waste amounts:

ContainerCost per collection
Sack (waste)£2.20
1,100 litre bin (waste)£16.30
1,100 litre bin (recycling)£5.90

Private company costs

If you’re looking for ongoing collection services, most waste management providers in London prepare customised quotes based on your business needs — contact the provider directly for more information.

Alternatively, for one-off collections, visit our dedicated page on waste disposal prices for more detailed pricing guidelines.

Recycling commercial waste in London

If you want to recycle commercial waste in London, as with general collections, you can use either your local council or a private provider. Alternatively, it may be possible to take it to a recycling site yourself, although you’ll need the appropriate licences to transport the waste.

Recycling commercial waste works in much the same way as general waste disposal — you can arrange for either a one-off collection or an ongoing service.

The type and frequency of the service will depend on what your business needs to recycle e.g. plastic, cardboard, glass, paper.

Some providers offer mixed recycling collections, while others only collect single stream recycling (one type of material). Other types of waste that can be recycled include food waste and some electronics. Recycled food waste can be turned into gas, used to create electricity, and made into fertiliser.

Generally, it’s cheaper to dispose of recyclable waste than other types — with one key reason for this being that it doesn’t incur the additional charges that sending waste to landfill does.

For lots more information on this issue, check out our business recycling page.

From this guide, you should have a better knowledge of the different aspects of managing commercial waste in London, including a rundown of the leading providers and an indication of the costs involved.

Plus, we’ve offered some top tips on choosing a provider in the capital, along with the key differences between using local councils and private providers.

To get stuck in and start comparing bespoke waste management quotes for your London business, just click the link below.

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Scarlett writes for the energy and HR sections of the site, as well as managing the Just Started profiles. Scarlett is passionate about championing equality and sustainability in business.

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