Fats, Oils and Grease (FOG) Program
The City of Santa Barbara's Fats, Oils, and Grease (FOG) program's goal is to reduce the number of sewer spills related to grease blockages. In 2014, the City revised its inspection and education program to better inform our restaurants and residents of the impacts of pouring FOG material down the drain. On average, the City’s FOG Wastewater Compliance Specialist makes 560 site visits each year to Food Service Establishments (FSE) to ensure compliance with the City's Title 16 requirements and to educate FSE employees on ways to reduce FOG from entering the sewer system. These improvements to the program have dramatically reduced the number of FOG related spills in the recent years.
Where does FOG come from?
Many food items can result in FOG production and cause problems for your sewer lateral if not properly disposed of. Some common FOG sources at FSEs and residential properties are
- Cooking oil
- Grease from lard or any source of meat
- Dairy products such as milk, ice cream, yogurt, sour cream, cheeses, mayonnaise, salad dressings, butter
- Food scraps
- Other baking products
Improperly disposing of these FOG materials by pouring them down the drain or garbage disposal can create obstructions in underground pipes and result in blockages or sewer overflows.
Oils and fats from cooking can be taken to the Community Hazardous Waste Collection Center at UCSB, 565 Mesa Rd. More information on where to dispose of FOG in Santa Barbara County can be found on the County's website.