Fats, Oils & Grease (FOG)

What is FOG?

FOG refers to Fats, Oil, and Grease from food preparation and kitchen clean up. Fats, Oil, and Grease are found in such things as:

  • Meat fats
  • Food scraps
  • Lard
  • Baking goods
  • Butter/Margarine
  • Cooking oil
  • Sauces
  • Shortening
  • Dairy products

Why is FOG a problem?

When poured down the drain, FOG can build up in pipes, pumps, and equipment, causing significant problems in the community’s sewer system and waste water treatment plant. Typical problems include sewer line blockages that can lead to sewer overflows and spills that cause environmental and health hazards, and property damage.

Why should I care about FOG?

Residential households contribute greatly to the build-up of FOG in the sewer lines because of the amount of grease washed into the plumbing system, usually through the kitchen sink. The results can be: raw sewage overflowing in your home or your neighbor’s home; an expensive and unpleasant cleanup; raw sewage flowing into parks, yards, and street; Potential contact with disease causing organisms; and an increase in operation and maintenance costs for local sewer agencies leading to higher sewer bills for customers.

What you can do to help

The easiest way to solve the grease problem and help prevent overflows of raw sewage is to keep FOG out of the sewer system in the first place.

What are some proper FOG handling and storage methods?

• Never pour grease, fats, or oil down the sink or garbage disposal.

• Freeze small amounts of fats, oil, and grease in a container with a tight fitting lid for disposal with your solid waste.

• Mix cooking oil with an absorbent material such as cat litter or coffee grounds, place in a lidded container for disposal with your solid waste.

• 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.

Watch out for scams

Be cautious of commercial additives, including detergents that claim to dissolve grease. These additives simply pass the grease down the pipes where it will clog the lines in another area. They are a waste of money, and are strongly discouraged.

Speak with your friends and neighbors about the problem of grease in the sewer system and how to keep it out. For additional “FOG” Best Management Practices and other information, please check out the Special Districts link at www.co.lake.ca.us or call the Lake County Special Districts Administration at 263-0119.

“Help Us Wipe Out GREASE”