Composting and Organic Recycling Changes Coming Across California
Residents in the City of Chino Hills must dispose of food scraps, food-soiled paper, and yard waste together in their organic waste (green lid) cart. Organic waste will be collected weekly for all customers on the same day as trash (black lid) and Recycling (blue lid).
Starting in 2022, Cities and Counties will need to provide organic waste collection services to all residents and businesses and recycle these organic materials under California Senate Bill (SB) 1383. This bill sets goals to reduce the disposal of organic waste in landfills, including green waste, wood waste, food waste, and fibers such as paper and cardboard. The purpose of this bill is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, such as methane, and address food insecurity in California. One aspect of this law requires kitchen food scraps to be separated from the rest of the trash and composted. City governments, along with their contracted trash haulers, are required to put a system into place for collecting and reducing the amount of organic waste that ends up in our landfills. California has a 75 percent organic waste diversion goal by 2025.
What are Organic Materials?
Cooked and raw food waste, such as uneaten fruits, vegetables, meats, dairy, bones, baked goods, etc.
Green Waste & Landscaping Trimmings: Grass clippings, small branches, leaves, cut flowers, garden trimmings, wood chips, and clean wood (no paint, no stain, etc.)
Food Soiled Paper:
Used napkins, food paper wraps, coffee filters, greasy pizza boxes, used paper plates and cups that do not contain a plastic membrane (thin plastic lining), etc.
How to Use Your Kitchen Pail
- Keep your food pail on the kitchen countertop or under the sink. Placing your pail in a visible area will help you remember to recycle your organics.
- Place food scraps or your leftover food-soiled paper items directly into the pail. The pail can be used as is or lined with a paper bag or newspaper. Do not use plastic bags of any type, even if they are labeled as biodegradable or compostable. Compostable cups, plates, or utensils are not acceptable.
- Scrape food prep scraps and leftovers from your plate or cutting board into your pail. Spoiled or stale food from your fridge and cupboards can also be placed in the pail.
- Empty your pail directly into your organics cart. DO NOT place your small food waste pail out on collection day. Only the full-size organics cart should be placed at the curb.
- Bread and grains
- Coffee grounds
- Food soiled paper
- Fruits and vegetables
- Meat, fish, and dairy
- Leftover food
- Yard waste (grass, leaves, brush, and tree branches)
- Branches larger than 3 inches in diameter
- Dirt, stone, concrete, or rock
- Fats, oil, or grease
- Palm fronds or yuccas
- Pet waste
- Plastic items and bags (even those labeled compostable or biodegradable)
Tips for Preventing Odor and Pests
- Avoid placing liquids inside your food pail
- Cut up citrus or bell peppers to keep smells away
- Empty your food pail every day or every couple of days into your organics cart
- Line your food pail with a paper bag or newspaper to reduce having to clean it out so often
- Sprinkle the inside with baking soda to help absorb moisture and smells
- Freeze or refrigerate meat, fish, and dairy scraps before adding them to the organic waste cart on collection day
- Place food waste in a paper bag
- Layer items like yard trimmings, newspaper, or a soiled pizza box on the bottom of your organics cart before discarding your food waste pail
- Place your organics cart out on the curb every week for service no matter how minimal to avoid pests and bugs
- Rinse your cart as needed
- DO NOT rinse your cart out into the street or down a storm drain. Instead rinse your cart out in the grass, garden bed, or flower bed to nourish and feed your soil.