The County Department of Environmental Facilities (DEF) has been actively working to develop ways to reduce the amount of food waste within Westchester. Two programs that highlight this commitment are the CompostED program and the Residential Food Scrap Transportation and Disposal (RFSTAD) program. See our quick-guide composting flyer about what items to include in your backyard composting, what items to include in a municipal composting collection program and what items should remain as recycling and garbage. 

Another way to reduce food waste is by donating excess edible food to those suffering from food insecurity or need. The Bill Emerson Good Samaritan Food Donation Act provides that a person “shall not be subject to civil or criminal liability arising from the nature, age, packaging, or condition of apparently wholesome food or an apparently fit grocery product that the person or gleaner donates in good faith to a non-profit organization for ultimate distribution to needy individuals.” The Feeding Westchester collects non-perishable items for those in need. DEF also suggests that individuals with excess prepared food or usable perishables contact local shelters and food pantries (list made by Westchester Community College), which will often be able to accept these items

DEF has developed a short and mid-term plan for food scraps in the County, and is reviewing long-term options for food waste recycling. The County’s Food Waste Study can be downloaded for review.