Sustainability Policy

At the NEC, we are committed to ensuring that through the work and events we deliver, we are as sustainable as possible.

View our Sustainability Policy

Food Miles

Food…local tastes even better

With the help of our in-house caterer Amadeus, we are committed to sourcing local.  Travelling no more than 30 miles to get you the best produce for your show, we also support a wide range of small and medium sized businesses.

  • We sell reusable cups and give discounts to customers that present their own.
  • We’re committed to supporting local communities – 60% of our food & beverage suppliers are small and medium sized enterprises.
  • We aim to source produce as locally as possible – 80% of our food and beverage suppliers to the NEC can be found within a 30-mile radius.
  • Food waste is separated on site and taken four miles to the Severn Trent Anaerobic Digestion Plant.


We’re all about prevention, making sure that as little waste as possible gets back into our environment.  For the bits that do, we are constantly looking at alternative and more and more environmentally friendly management methods.  We’re a venue with a conscious.

  • We have a fleet of waste vehicles based on site, so no unnecessary travelling takes place, further minimising emissions
  • Our policy is that waste should not travel more than 30 miles from site, minimising carbon emissions and supporting local businesses
  • Segregated glass waste is taken to a processor in Walsall. High quality glass cullet from the processing is used to make further glass bottles. Lower quality cullet is used in road building.
  • The NEC is a zero to landfill venue with an average recycle rate of 80%
  • Metal waste is collected as a mixed load and transported to a processor 5 miles from the NEC
  • Recyclable material is transported to a second plant in Wolverhampton where it undergoes further sorting, grading, is bulked and enters the commodities market
  • Large wood waste items are segregated and taken to a local processor less than three miles from the venue
  • Wood is sorted and utilised in various ways depending on the grade such as reclaimed/reused, biomass pellets, animal bedding, wood chippings for use on land
  • Pallets are collected, stored and taken to a local company 2 junctions up the M42. Here they are checked/repaired and re-distributed into the transport industry
  • We regularly find alternative ways to deal with discarded items, such as donating them to local community groups for reuse. Past donations include supporting community cafes with chairs and tables, community garden projects with soil/hardcore/bark, local hostels with excess food, counselling organisations with office furniture


Energy…we’re full of bright ideas

LED’s, smart metres, carbon off-setting…just some of the ways we’re tackling our energy usage.  A big venue like us undoubtedly uses a lot of energy, but with our comprehensive plan of creative initiatives this is minimised as much as possible.

  • The food taken to the Severn Trent Anaerobic Digestion Plant is composted and the resulting methane generates electricity to power the local sewage plant, with excess put back into the National Grid
  • The compost is then sold on to local farmers as fertiliser
  • Supporting tens of thousands of jobs, Birmingham Airport, Birmingham Business Park, Resorts World and The NEC, have created the ‘Birmingham Green Hub Liftshare’ scheme to ease traffic and parking congestion, promote sustainable travel and reduce single occupancy car journeys.

…And that’s not all.  The team is constantly busy working on even more sustainability initiatives, so please watch this space!