Fats, Oils, & Grease

City of St. Joseph Water Protection Division Fats, Oil, & Grease Program Information

Fats, oil, and grease (FOG) is a common problem for wastewater utilities nationwide and is most frequently a result of waste product from food preparation and dish cleaning at Food Service Establishments (FSE). FSE are major contributors to blockages in the city's collection system. One of the most effective measures of FOG control involves the installation and maintenance of grease removal devices. This source of pollution is also easily preventable by good kitchen management practices and proper maintenance of the grease removal device. In order to protect human health, water quality, and the beauty of St. Joseph, all FSE must do their part. These are some frequently asked questions about the FOG Program.

Q: What is a grease interceptor?

A: A grease interceptor is a plumbing device designed to intercept most greases and solids before they enter a wastewater disposal system. These devices reduce the amount of fats, oils and greases that enter sewers.

Q: Does my facility need a grease interceptor?

A: A grease interceptor is required if your establishment 1) is a new construction facility, or existing facility that is issued a plumbing permit in conjunction with any expansion, or renovation 2) does not have a functioning grease interceptor and you are considered a food service establishment under the Health and Sanitation Code of the City of St. Joseph.

Q: What are the minimum requirements for grease interceptors?

A: All grease interceptors shall be of a type, construction, and capacity sufficient to prevent visible accumulation of FOG in lateral and downstream City sewer. They shall be installed in a location that is readily and easily accessible for cleaning and inspection. The design, installation, and sample port of grease interceptors shall be in accordance with the Uniform Plumbing Code. All potential grease bearing fixtures and drains, including prewash sink must be connected to the grease interceptor.

Q: Will my food service establishment be inspected?

A: Yes. The FOG inspector will conduct an initial inspection of your facility to assist you with your understanding of the FOG Program. Routine FOG inspections are then conducted on a regular basis to ensure continued compliance with FOG Program rules and regulations.

Q: Is there additional FOG Program information available?

A: Yes. City Code Chapter 29-330 Fats, Oils, and Greases Controls. Contact the FOG Coordinator at (816) 271-4677 for any questions or concerns on what is required.

More info

Kitchen Best Management Practice (PDF)

Grease Interceptor Service Record Log (PDF)

Sample port diagrams (PDF)