Food Scraps Management

Caruso Produce donates food

Food is the single largest portion of the garbage the region throws away every year. Nearly a fifth of that is food waste -- enough to fill 5,000 long-haul trucks. Businesses are responsible for 55 percent of the food in the garbage.

Landfilled food scraps break down and generate methane, a potent greenhouse gas. When food is diverted from the landfill, it helps prevent these emissions and can create other useful things, like meals for people, compost for agriculture, or green energy to power homes and businesses.

Prevent Waste in the First Place



By streamlining menus, supply orders and food preparation, businesses can reduce the amount of food scraps produced before the food is even served. Monitor the food scraps your organization throws away and identify creative solutions to prevent waste and be more efficient.

Donate Edible Food

In Washington County, over 64,000 people -- or 11.5% -- are food insecure, meaning they don't know where their next meal is coming from (source). By donating surplus food to food rescue agencies, your business can help in the fight against hunger.

The benefits of donating edible food include: 

  • Reducing waste and your business' disposal costs
  • Positioning your business as a partner in the fight to end hunger
  • Qualifying for enhanced tax deductions 
Businesses that donate food in good faith are protected from liability by federal and state Good Samaritan laws (ORS Chapter 30.890 and 30.892 and the Bill Emerson Food Donation Act). Learn more by reading our Food Donation Guide.
 

Food Scraps Collection



Food scraps collection is available to most businesses in Washington County through your franchised waste hauler. Food scraps collection is good for business. Businesses may experience less garbage, increased marketing opportunities and a boost in employee morale.  

All food is accepted including:

  • Bread and baked goods
  • Dairy including eggshells
  • Meat and fish including small bones
  • Vegetables and fruits
  • Plate scrapings

The following items are not allowed in the food scraps collection programs:

  • All non-food items such as paper, cardboard, service ware or plastics
  • Grease or oil
  • Liquids
Food scraps collected in Washington County are sent to either an anaerobic digestion facility in Junction City or a windrow compost facility outside of Corvallis. The anaerobic digestion facility converts the food scraps into fertilizer and enough electricity to power 2,200 Oregon homes annually. Windrow composting generates a nutrient-rich compost product that is applied to local farms and gardens.

Connect with a Green Business Advisor

Green Business Advisors provide technical assistance and free resources to businesses interested in food waste prevention, food donation and food scraps collection. Email or call 503-846-3605 to request assistance and free supplies to help get started.

Resources


  • Food Donation Guide

  • Oregon Food Bank will accept edible food directly from growers, processors, grocery stores, retailers and distributors. To donate edible food, the Oregon Food Bank by calling 503-282-0555.

  • Waste Not Food Taxi is a network of volunteers who can pick up food donations and deliver them safely to local food pantries. Call 503-806-5230 if you would like to schedule a pick-up.

  • Composting and Recycling Training for Commercial Kitchens: English | Spanish