San Francisco to require composting of food scraps
San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom last week signed legislation that will require both city residents and businesses, including restaurants, to compost food scraps, beginning this fall.
Believed to the first mandatory composting law in the nation, the legislation is part of the city’s broader plan to divert 75 percent of resources from landfills by 2010 and to achieve zero waste by 2020.
According to Newsom they are currently keeping 72 percent of recyclable material out of our landfill through their voluntary composting program that has been in place for several years. The resulting product is used by farms and vineyards across the Bay Area to fertilize fields. According to the legislation, about 36 percent of what San Francisco sends to landfills is compostable, primarily food scraps.
Adam Alberti, a spokesman for Recology, the contractor that operates the city’s composting and recycling collection service, said more than 1,000 restaurants already voluntarily participate in the program, in part because composting is less costly than waste removal for noncompostables.
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