Fats, Oils and Grease (FOG) Program and Permits

Overview

FOG is an industry term for Fats, Oils and Grease. It includes animal fats, vegetable fats, and oils used to cook and prepare food.  FOG is a solid or viscous substance which can create an obstruction in the sewer system if not properly disposed.  FOG discharged by residential, commercial, institutional, and industrial users can present a significant problem for the City’s wastewater collection system.

According to CT DEEP, Grease from restaurants, homes, and industrial sources is the most common cause (47%) of reported blockages and sanitary sewer overflows.  When grease is washed down the drain, it sticks to the inside of sewer pipes on your property and in the City streets.  Eventually, it builds up and can block the pipe causing sewage to overflow into your basement, City streets, and local waterways.  Cleaning up the sewage can be very costly to both the City and the property owner.  Therefore, the City has implemented a FOG program designed to:

  • To prevent the excessive introduction and accumulation of fats, oils and grease (FOG) in the sewer system.  FOG accumulations in the sewer system causes blockages and subsequent backups and sanitary sewer overflows.
  • Reduce the cost of maintaining the public sewer system by preventing the accumulation of FOG and associated backups.
  • Protect public health and safety by preventing pollution caused from sanitary sewer overflows.

Restaurants

Restaurants classified as a Class III or Class IV Food Service Establishment (FSE) are required to limit the amount of FOG discharged to the sanitary sewer.  This is achieved by installing either an exterior grease trap/interceptor or an Active Grease Recovery Unit (AGRU) in accordance with City FOG Ordinances and Water and Sewer Department FOG Specifications.  Pollution prevention and best management practices are also required of the permittee including quarterly inspections of the installed equipment and clean outs of the collection systems.  Recovered fats, oils, and grease shall be disposed of at a regional collection/transfer/disposal site.

As per Department of Public Health (19-13-B42) a class III food service establishment prepares potentially hazardous food by heat processing and serves it within 4 hours.   If the food is prepared by heat processing and held for more than 4 hours before being consumed it is a class IV food service establishment.

All Class III and Class IV FSEs are required to obtain a permit from the Water and Sewer Department prior to discharging to the sanitary sewer. 

  • Complete and submit the FOG Permit Application
  • Submit the $120.00 permit fee
  • Schedule an inspection of the FOG equipment

Once the restaurant passes the FOG inspection, the Water and sewer Department will issue the FOG permit.  Annual inspections are also required in order to maintain the permit.   

Homeowners

You can take measures to prevent FOG build up in the sewer lateral to your home.  These easy steps can avoid costly backups and overflows that can damage your property.

DO THIS

  • Scrape all food and leftover grease into the trash, never the sink.
  • Wipe pots, pans and dishes with dry paper towels before rinsing/washing them.
  • Pour cooled FOG into a can with a tight lid (coffee can) and dispose of it in the garbage.
  • Talk to friends and family about FOG in the sewer system and help them become proactive in preventing sewer blockages.

DO NOT DO THIS

  • Do not pour FOG down the sink drain or toilet.
  • Do not use hot water to wash grease down the drain. When the water cools, FOG will solidify and clog the pipes.
  • Do not rely on additives or detergents to dissolve grease. They only disperse it down the line to recollect and cause more problems.
  • Do not put grease or greasy food into the garbage disposal.
  • Never pour grease or used oil into the storm drains or on the ground.


For more information, please call our office at 860-638-3515.