Major changes to Portland’s commercial compost program – caterers to be affected

Image: Charlie Kloppenburg for Sustainable Business Oregon

In the news: coming March 2015, commercial compost programs in Portland will no longer accept disposable dishware labeled as “compostable”, such as “corn plastic” and the like. From Sustainable Business Oregon:

“Food-selling organizations like the Portland Trail Blazers have their work cut for them following a major change to Portland’s commercial compost program that drops the ability to compost containers and other non-food items.”

So-labeled “compostable” plastic dishware is also not permitted in Portland’s residential program, so in our area, it simply doesn’t make sense to purchase or use those types of foodware for any reason, even an event or wedding. It’s just going to go in the landfill.

Link: Reminders on what is allowed in residential Portland compost

Link: Reminders on what is allowed in commercial Portland compost

Long read: More about the pros and cons of corn-based plastic, or PLA (Smithsonian)

It is a bit of a disappointment to see this feature dropped from Portland’s commercial compost program. Many special event caterers, food trucks at parties, and wedding caterers will be affected as well. However, with all challenges come an opportunity — all of us will be challenged and encouraged to decrease waste and move away from any kind of disposables, compostable or not.

One thought on “Major changes to Portland’s commercial compost program – caterers to be affected

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