We now accept used cooking oil at our recycling center. See Recycling Drop off at Lancaster webpage for details.
This year around 40% of households are expected to serve turkey during the Holidays. An average bird produces almost a pound of waste fats, oils and grease (FOG) which are byproducts of cooking and food preparation. FOG can be found in meat fats, oils, shortening, butter, margarine, sauces, and dairy products. During Thanksgiving and Christmas, a staggering 7 tons of fat from holiday dinners goes down the drain locally - That’s the equivalent to over 56,000 sticks of butter!
According to Bruce Katz, the City’s Utility Services Manager: “Many people still don’t realize the harmful effects of pouring fats, oils and greases down the sink. They solidify quickly when they hit the cool walls of the sewer and stick to the side. Over time this builds up preventing the normal flow of wastewater and debris from passing through. With no way through, the wastewater backs up in the system, coming out of drains and sewers and potentially your home. No one wants to suffer the consequences of raw sewage flooding their yards, driveways or worst still, inside their homes.”
The City of Lancaster spends approximately $1.8 million a year preventing sewer blockages and responding to sanitary sewer overflows – 90% of these are caused by FOG. So we want to remind Lancaster residents not to put FOG down the drain. Instead, follow these simple tips:
Proper FOG handling and storage methods
• Allow fats to cool and solidify and then dispose of them in the trash. Never pour grease, fats, or oil down the sink or garbage disposal.
• Pour FOG into jars, cans, and plastic tubs (Careful, the liquid may be hot!) or other container. Let contents cool and solidify. When the container is full, throw away with your trash.
• Mix cooking oil with an absorbent material such as cat litter or coffee grounds, place in a lidded container for disposal with your trash.
• For greasy pans, pour off the grease into a container mentioned above, and use a paper towel to wipe out the remaining grease in the pan prior to washing.
Fats, Oils, Grease Cause Sewer Blockages, Harms the Environment
The City of Lancaster is working to make residents and business owners aware of the serious harmful impact residual fats, oils, and grease (FOG) can have on our local sanitary sewer system and on the environment. Because sewer systems are not designed or equipped to handle FOG, discharging FOG into the sewer causes severe and costly sewer blockages, as well as overflows into local homes, businesses and storm drains.
City Urges Residents to Avoid Placing FOG in Sewer System
To read the Mayor's statement and press release on FOG, click on the following link: Press Release
A food service establishment within the city limits of Lancaster is required to submit a F.O.G. application to the City of Lancaster Finance Department prior to opening for business. You can download a copy of the application by clicking on this link: FOG Application
If you would like to read or download an information packet briefly explaining the FOG application or program, click on this link: FOG Information packet For more detailed information contact an inspector at the numbers below.
A grease trap installation plumbing permit information packet is available by clicking on this link:
Information on the City’s municipal codes for Fats, Oils and Grease requirements can be found at:
Lancaster FOG Ordinance
Talk to a FOG Inspector
If you would like to contact a FOG inspector directly, please call Ben at (661) 723-5887 or Tim at (661) 945-6892.