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File #: 16-0844   
Type: Report to Council Status: Passed
Meeting Body: City Council
On agenda: 9/20/2016
Title: City-wide Residential Food Scraps Collection Program for Single-Family Households and Small Businesses that Use Commercial Cart Service
Attachments: 1. Summary of Sunnyvale's Food Scraps Pilot Program, 2. Summary of Mountain View's Food Scraps Pilot Program, 3. Minutes Exerpt 8/15/16 SC Meeting, 4. Staff Presentation 20160920 (16-0844)
REPORT TO COUNCIL

SUBJECT
Title
City-wide Residential Food Scraps Collection Program for Single-Family Households and Small Businesses that Use Commercial Cart Service

Report
REPORT IN BRIEF
Between March and December of 2015 the City and Specialty Solid Waste & Recycling (Specialty) provided an innovative food scraps collection pilot program to more than 500 households in five Sunnyvale neighborhoods. The pilot provided a split cart (repurposed from the City's "split-cart" recycling program) to each household. Residents were asked to place food scraps in one side of the cart and garbage in the other for weekly collection by a split-body truck.

The purpose of the pilot was to test the feasibility and suitability of the split carts for food scraps collection. The amounts of food scraps and garbage collected in the pilot areas were carefully measured in order to gauge resident participation rates and food scraps capture rates. Contamination levels (i.e., garbage in the food scraps) were monitored. Staff also tested various outreach methods and messages for clarity and effectiveness.

The tonnage data and resident feedback generated during the pilot program was analyzed to draw conclusions on this method for diverting food scraps from single-family homes. This information was combined with estimates of the cost for collecting and diverting the food scraps and compared to the cost of the present system in which food scraps are, for the most part, disposed in a landfill.

Based on the food scraps capture and participation data, and estimates of the net cost of implementing this program Citywide, staff is recommending that Council direct staff to implement a split-cart food scraps collection program for all single-family households, as well as 300 small businesses that have residential-style garbage cart service. The food scraps would be processed into animal feed ingredients at the Sustainable Organic Solutions (SOS) facility in Santa Clara, consistent with the c...

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