Metro Council (Portland, OR) Votes In Favor Of Food Scraps Policy

The Metro Council voted July 26, 2018 in favor of an ordinance that will require some types of businesses in greater Portland to separate their food scraps from the garbage.

This means that, starting in March 2020, businesses that generate 1,000 pounds or more of food scraps per week must collect their food scraps separately from garbage. The program will roll out over five years. Eventually, almost 3,000 businesses, including schools, will be required to separate their food scraps. Businesses that generate less than 250 pounds of food scraps per week will not be subject to the requirement.

Businesses in the Portland area already have to separate recyclables like metal, paper and glass from their trash.

So why add food scraps – stuff such as eggshells, bones and peels – to this list?

Food is the biggest component of what the greater Portland area throws away — enough food to fill 5,000 long-haul trucks a year. More than half of that food comes from businesses. When food gets to a landfill, it rots and generates methane, a potent contributor to climate change.

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In mid-July, 2018 BioCycle reported Metro Council was considering the food scraps policy

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