Best management practices

Fats, oil and grease can be managed effectively in the food service industry to minimize the discharge to the sewer system and decrease the required maintenance of grease interceptors. By preventing the introduction of grease into the waste system, you reduce the burden on the grease interceptor and thus reduce maintenance time, costs and disposal fees. These Best Management Practices are used throughout the food service industry and are effective when implemented properly and consistently. 

Train kitchen staff: 
Train kitchen staff in management practices and methods to reduce the volume of grease discharged to the sanitary sewer system. Train them to be aware of problems created by grease in the sewer system, possible violations and fines and the cost of cleaning clogged pipes. Even a small amount of grease on each pot, pan or plate can be substantial when you serve hundreds of meals per day. 

Post "no grease" signs: 
Post "No Grease" signs above sinks, on dishwashers and near other grease discharge points to serve as a constant reminder to keep grease out of the system. 

Dry wipe pots, pans and dishware prior to dishwashing: 
Food, fats, cooking oil and grease remaining in pots and pans should be dry wiped or scraped out into the trash prior to wet washing. In some establishments this can substantially reduce FOG discharged to your grease interceptors. Disposing of grease by recycling or garbage is less expensive than pumping out and hauling away FOG from a grease interceptor. 

Do not dispose of waste food through a garbage disposal: 
Ground up food scraps will settle in the grease interceptor and take up valuable space. This will lower the detention time in the grease interceptor and result in reduced efficiency. Instead, dispose of food waste in the trash or compost it. This will also help in reducing the frequency of grease interceptor cleanings. 

Clean grease interceptor routinely and keep records: 
Routine cleanings and inspections will ensure proper operation of the interceptor. Make note of the grease level and record it in the Cleaning and Maintenance Log. If the grease level is at its maximum, the cleaning frequency should be increased.  Grease interceptors that are not cleaned regularly can produce very unpleasant odors. 

Witness cleaning and maintenance events: 
The on-duty manager should witness all cleaning events to ensure they are performed completely and properly. This will ensure that pumpers or haulers do not take any shortcuts. To properly clean the interceptor, the entire contents must be removed, including grease cap (floating grease) and sludge pocket (settled solids). Failure to remove the slug pocket (settled solids) in the bottom will result in lowered total capacity and reduced detention time. The manager should also check that removable baffles are replaced after cleaning. 

Inspect the grease interceptor during maintenance: 
The design of most grease interceptors is very simple, but each part serves an essential function. The baffles must be in place and properly positioned to be effective. Covers must fit properly so they do not leak. In-ground interceptors should be examined for cracks, which could allow wastewater to leak out or ground water to leak in.