The health of your pipes, business, and local community, to be precise, could be in danger if you pour grease down the drain.
There’s a litany of things you can do with leftover grease from a kitchen, and many restaurants will end up with an overabundance of it, especially if they frequently fry dishes. The one thing you should never do is dispose of it down the drain, especially when there are other options.
The New York City Department of Environment Protection is urging their citizens to not dump liquified fat, oils, and grease (FOG) down the drain, according to The Huffington Post. When grease goes down the drain, it can cause blockages; notably, London has had issues with “fatbergs” down in the sewers, large chunks of fat that combine and collect debris. The backages, backups, and blockages caused from grease are something they’d like to avoid, as costs of clearing up such messes are more expenses that can be avoided.
The DEP suggests allowing grease to cool and harden before being put into non-recyclable containers in the trash. This allows it to be disposed of at proper waste sites and doesn’t waste otherwise-fine recyclable containers.
If you don’t want to do this, you might want to look at one of these alternative measures in safely removing grease from the equation.
- Look into local regulations regarding oil disposal; you might be in a location where you need to have a private company come and dispose of oil saved outside. If not, you may want to combine your forces with local businesses that also have to dispose of oil. You can split costs and efforts if you work with nearby businesses.
- Allow customers that use converted oil in their cars to take it, or even possibly buy it from you. There are cars that have been modified to run on cooking oil, and drivers of them are constantly looking for new sources of the disposable waste.
- Get as much use out of the oil as you can. After drained, strained and filter the oil, and depending on what had been fried in it (fish proves to be particularly tricky), you might be able to get a few more frying trips out of it.
If you don’t dispose of fats, oils, and grease appropriately, you may be setting yourself up for fines alongside the general trouble for your community and business.
Beyond the appropriate ways of disposing of the fats, oils, and grease, you may just generally want to look into alternate ways to make sure you don’t even need to dispose of much. Baking, steaming, and other ways to cooking may prove to be more heart-healthy, less expensive in production costs, and don’t have the problems associated for the environment as fats, oil, and grease do.
Do you have any plans or alternatives to using these slick cooking materials in your restaurant?