Mandatory Commercial Organics Requirements

Businesses are required to recycle their organic waste depending on the amount of waste they generate per week.

  1. Laws and Regulations
  2. Getting Started
  3. Resources
  4. FAQs

Laws and Regulations

Effective April 2016, businesses will be required to recycle their organic waste depending on the amount of waste they generate per week. AB 1826 (Chesbro, Chapter 727, Statutes of 2014) phases in new organics recycling requirements over the next several years to help the state meet its goal of recycling 75% of its waste by 2020.

1.   April 1, 2016: Businesses that generate eight cubic yards of organic waste per week shall arrange for organic waste recycling services.

2.   January 1, 2017: Businesses that generate four cubic yards of organic waste per week shall arrange for organic waste recycling services.

3.   January 1, 2019: Businesses that generate four cubic yards or more of commercial solid waste per week shall arrange for organic waste recycling services.

4.   Summer/Fall 2021: If CalRecycle determines that the statewide disposal of organic waste in 2020 has not been reduced by 50 percent of the level of disposal during 2014, the organic recycling requirements on businesses will expand to cover businesses that generate two cubic yards or more of commercial solid waste per week. Additionally certain exemptions, previously discussed, may no longer be available if this target is not met.

Note: Multifamily dwellings are not required to have a food waste diversion program

Requirements

Businesses that are required to recycle their organic waste shall implement at least one, or a combination, of the following activities;

  1. Recycling its own organic waste onsite or self-haul *requires an Exemption Form (PDF) be completed and submitted to DCD for approval.
  2. Subscribe to a hauler(s)
  3. Arrange for the pickup of organic materials from a vendor that doesn’t charge for their services. *requires an Exemption Form (PDF) be completed and submitted to DCD for approval.
  4. Donate organics to food banks or animal feed options *requires an Exemption Form (PDF) be completed and submitted to DCD for approval.

Note: The law requires businesses to recycling ALL of their organic waste. If you decide to donate to food banks, the organics that do not meet the health and safety standards will still need to be recycled through another option above.

Note: Please note that material collected for animal feed may be subject to California Department of Food and Agriculture guidelines related to swine garbage feeding.