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Cooperative Extension: Carolina Clear

Restaurant Owners

Commercial kitchens produce FOG (fats, oil, and grease); these cooking by-products come from deep fryers, frying pans, and grills. FOG can find its way down the sink, floor and storm drains; which can be devastating to our environment and lead to costly repairs and compliance issues for restaurants.

Proper FOG Management Helps:

  • Avoid expensive repairs. FOG solidifies around the insides of underground pipes. This can lead to pipe bursts, overflows, backups, and blockages, which can cost a lot more money than proper FOG management (this may include steep fines and repair costs).
  • Prevent pollution. When FOG accumulates in sewer systems it can lead to overflows which place sewer waste in lakes, streams, and oceans, causing serious concerns to human health and the environment. Furthermore, proper FOG management can help the environment by providing an otherwise wasted source of biodiesel.
  • Prevent inconveniences that are bad for business. Greasy pipes and parking lots lead to bad odors, rodents, and pest problems.

Tips for minimizing problems associated with FOG in Commercial Kitchens

  1. Prevent oil spills. Be careful when handling oil and fats.
  2. Inform others. Talk to staff and co-workers about the importance of proper FOG management.
  3. Recycle or sell used oil. Find a grease handler that will recycle grease instead of throwing it away.
  4. Clean grease traps regularly. Any sink or floor drain that might take in oil should be connected to a grease trap or grease separation device. An overly full grease trap does not properly separate grease from water. Clean drain traps at least once a week. Contract a grease handler to remove grease from interceptor tanks at least once every three months.
  5. Dry clean FOG. If you use water to clean up grease, it will ultimately go down the drain. Use food-grade paper to wipe up grease or kitty litter to absorb spills that can then be scooped up and properly disposed of.
  6. Keep FOG out of garbage disposal. Never put fatty food scraps or oil down a garbage disposal, even if it is connected to a grease trap.
  7. Locate grease bins appropriately. Location, location, location! Ensure bins are easily accessible; placed in well-lit areas and within a reasonable distance of the kitchen door.
  8. Schedule for grease bins to be pumped regularly. Be aware of how full grease containers are and know when the grease pumping company is scheduled to pump.
  9. Designate a safe equipment washing area. Kitchen mats, grills, and other equipment should be washed in an area that does not lead to a storm drain.
Cooperative Extension Carolina Clear
Cooperative Extension Carolina Clear |