Commercial Food Waste Recycling
Food waste generated at pre-approved commercial venues is accepted at the Miramar Greenery for a discounted tipping fee. Food scraps are processed into rich compost product that can be used as an amendment to improve soil texture, and increase both nutrients and water holding capacity.
Generators must be located in the City of San Diego and must be in full compliance with the City's Recycling Ordinance, including recycling of all mandated materials, providing convenient recycling to guests and staff by pairing well marked recycling and trash containers, and providing written information to staff and guests. More information on the City's Recycling Ordinance .
Loads must be hauled by a City franchised hauler (PDF) in a tightly sealed container, and delivered to the Miramar Greenery in an end-dump truck system.
The City's commercial food waste recycling program system requires the following steps:
- City staff meets with facility administrator, kitchen manager and/or maintenance supervisor
- City staff provides technical assistance for on-site and logistics implementation
- City staff trains all kitchen, maintenance and administration staff
- Facility starts a "Pilot Program Phase" where facility's representative is required to accompany City staff to inspect and evaluate the first three loads at the Miramar Greenery
- Once successfully completing the Pilot Program Phase, the facility becomes a regular participant of the program
Before throwing away food, commercial venues are encouraged to look at other options to divert excess food, such as donation to human and animal shelters.
Thanks to the Bill Emerson Good Samaritan Food Donation Act passed by Congress in 1996, food donors such as manufacturers, growers and packers, restaurants, corporate cafeterias, and caterers can participate in the fight against hunger by donating non-perishable and prepared foods without the risk of being prosecuted for liability. For more information please check the National Environmental Protect Agency (EPA) website.
Several organizations in San Diego will accept certain type of food waste, such as the San Diego Food Bank, Father Joe's Village, and San Diego Rescue Mission. Please contact the organizations directly for more information on their specific requirements.
Father Joe's Village
3350 E Street, 92102 - Food Warehouse
Feeding America San Diego
9455 Waples Street, Suite 135, 92121
San Diego Food Bank
9850 Distribution Avenue, San Diego CA 92121
(858) 527-1419 x 32
San Diego Rescue Mission
120 Elm Street, 92101 - Kitchen
5150 University Ave, 92105 - Food Warehouse
To determine the feasibility of starting a commercial food waste recycling program, call the Environmental Services Department at 858-694-7000.