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Edible Food Recovery

Edible food recovery is part of the implementation of California’s legislation (SB 1383) addressing climate pollutants and wasted food. To reduce food waste and help address food insecurity, SB 1383 requires that by 2025 California recovers 20% of edible food that would otherwise go to waste and redistribute it to feed people in need. Californians send 11.2 billion pounds of food to landfills each year, some of which was still fresh enough to have been recovered. In 2018, 4.3 million Californians (10.8% of California's population) did not have enough to eat. By May 2020, that number doubled to 9.2 million (23% of California's population). As part of SB 1383, surplus food still safe for people to eat will instead go to local food recovery organizations and services to help feed those in need. More information is available on the CalRecycle website and in the CalRecycle Edible Food Recovery FAQs.

Edible food generators (EFGs) can donate food through Careit! Careit is a food rescue app and website that makes it easy for businesses to donate surplus foodcareit_text_logo directly to local food recovery organizations (FROs). To get started, create a free account through the dashboard portal or app. Donations can then be posted as surplus food becomes available, or donations can be scheduled ahead of time.

Which businesses are required to donate edible food? CalRecycle requires Tier I and Tier II commercial EFGs to donate edible food to FROs. 
CalRecycle-Tier I_Tier II-Guidance

To reduce food waste and help local food insecure families, edible food may be donated to the following organizations:
Please refer to the organization's website, or contact them directly, for information on accepted donations and any specified collection days prior to drop off. Additional contact information and notes on accepted items.

To support local food recovery organizations, in June 2022 ReGen Monterey and Salinas Valley Recycles distributed SB 1383 Edible Food Recovery Pilot Grants to increase edible food recovery capacity. The grants could help organizations make purchases including, but not limited to: additional shelving, refrigeration and freezer units, pallet jacks, and vehicle purchases for transportation. Grants were distributed to Dorothy's Place, Loaves and Fishes, Meals on Wheels, Shoreline Church, and Victory Mission

For information on the City of Monterey's implementation of SB 1383's organic waste collection requirements, see the Organic Waste Recycling page.