Partnership Announcement For RHS Chelsea


The Woodhorn Group, a family run business based near Chichester, has joined forces with one of the UK leading colleges for the land and environment, Sparsholt College Hampshire and global packaging company Huhtamaki.  They will be supplying their Earth Cycle Peat free Compost to the 2014 RHS Chelsea the Flower Show.

Sparsholt College Horticulture students have designed and will be building a sustainable themed garden in compost produced by The Woodhorn Group. The peat free compost has been generated from the recycling of Huhtamaki’s environmentally friendly disposable cups, BioWare, which all the staff and students at the College have been using since last year.

Plants for RHS Chelsea are currently being grown in the Woodhorn produced peat free compost before they are planted into the garden which has been inspired by Huhtamaki’s manufacturing process and green credentials. The entire garden will have a truly environmental and sustainable theme.

Horticulture lecturer Chris Bird, who is leading the 21 Extended Diploma students said: “Naturally we are already very environmentally aware and conscientious here at Sparsholt and our students have become quite the recycling champions around the College as part of this project. On a greater scale though, they have also seen through this new partnership with The Woodhorn Group and Huhtamaki how two very different organisations, linked by common values, are playing a significant role in the manufacture of future friendly products which can be recycled and therefore re-used.”

A visit to Huhtamaki’s factory in Gosport inspired much of the student’s design for the garden. The many production processes, the speed and efficiency of the machines and importance of recycling all influenced the students as they collectively came up with creative ideas for the exhibit. As 17-year student John Monger commented: “The visit to Huhtamaki showed me how diverse the industry is which gave me more of an idea how to design the garden.” He also observed: “Recycling is very important to the horticulture industry as it enables us to work with environmentally friendly materials.” Fellow student Simon Walsha was very inspired by the Huhtamaki visit, as he said: “Big businesses can be genuinely environmentally aware.”

The Horticulture students also paid a visit to The Woodhorn Groups Waste Management facility in Chichester. Here they gained a greater understanding of the recycling process and saw how disposable cups can gain a new life in the form of compost.

Morgan Davies, Waste Recycling Manager for The Woodhorn Group said: “The partnership with Huhtamaki and Sparsholt College has been a great opportunity to prove that a manufactured biodegradable product can be effectively recycled into a usable, quality material that is not only 100% natural, but has a genuine benefit as a soil conditioner and improver. Hosting Sparsholt College at our composting facility offered not only an excellent chance to introduce the horticulture students to the processes involved in manufacture, but showed them how efficiently the loop can be closed. They now understand every aspect of the partnership from cup manufacture to final recycling and production of the peat free compost. It gave them a real insight into how sustainable and environmentally friendly peat free compost production can be.”

Sparsholt College Hampshire has a long history of Chelsea medal success achieving 5 Gold medals, 3 Silver-gilt medals, 4 Silver medals, 3 Bronze medals since 1998.

For further information please visit, and

Notes to Editor

  • Sparsholt College Hampshire, incorporating Andover College, is one of the largest colleges in the South East offering hundreds of full and part-time courses as well as bespoke training for business.
  • The College was recognised (in January 2009) as an Associate College of the University of Portsmouth which validates degree programmes at the Sparsholt College campus.
  • The Sparsholt College campus is a recognised as one of the country’s leading colleges for outdoor and land based industries.
  • The Andover College campus serves North Hampshire with a range of academic and vocational qualifications and includes a dedicated Sixth Form Academy.
  • The College has achieved the Matrix Standard accreditation for delivering information, advice and guidance services.
  • Sparsholt College Hampshire is on the UK government’s Register of Education and Training Providers. The Sponsor Licence Number (SLN) on this register is G0J84DCF3.
  • The College was assessed for the quality of its Higher Education provision by the Universities and Colleges of Higher Education Quality Assurance Agency and received endorsements for the many areas of Good Practice.

For further information please contact:
Sue Allison, Press and Communications Officer 01962 797563 / [email protected]
Huhtamaki UK

  • Huhtamaki’s BioWare paper hot cups are manufactured using paperboard material that is PEFC (Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification) Chain of Custody certified. PEFC is an international, non-profit organisation promoting sustainable forest management, for further information please visit
  • BioWare cups are fully certified in accordance with the European norm for compostability of packaging (EN13432), and can be composted within 60 days in the optimum condition of industrial composting facilities.
  • Huhtamaki’s environmentally-friendly BioWare range is the perfect way for caterers to enhance their ‘green’ image! The comprehensive selection of high quality foodservice disposables comprises single-use cups, tumblers, food containers, Strongholders carry trays, cutlery and Chinet® plates and bowls; and fulfils the needs of various foodservice operators – from those operating cafés, coffee shops and juice bars, to those who provide stadium catering and hotel dinner service.

The Woodhorn Group

  • The Earth Cycle peat free compost was created by the Woodhorn Group who shredded the paper cups supplied by Huhtamaki and mixed them with green and vegetation waste. This was followed by two weeks’ sanitisation with every day checks, followed by 10 weeks’ stabilisation with weekly monitoring, before the final PAS100 assessment. Move to Woodhorn section
  • Established in 1882, The Woodhorn Group is a family run business based near Chichester in West Sussex. All aspects of the business are managed with the objective of environmental and economic sustainability for both the Business and the Community in which they operate.
  • The Woodhorn Group operates two licensed recycling sites enabling significant diversion of green and wood waste from landfill in the South East. Its range of Earth Cycle peat free composts and soil conditioners provide eco-friendly, 100% peat-free products for use by trade and domestic customers.
  • Earth Cycle diverts locally produced green waste materials away from landfill and processes it into sustainable products, packed full of essential nutrients necessary for healthy soil, promoting strong disease free root growth.
  • The Woodhorn Group’s peat free compost range is full of essential nutrients that act as nature’s natural soil conditioner. Adding organic matter improves soil structure and increases workability, whilst improving drainage in heavy clay soils. The addition of Earth Cycle peat free composts can also increase moisture retention in sandy soils, leading to improved drought resistance.
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