What You Need to Know About State Recycling Laws

Over the past 30 years since California first mandated residential curbside recycling, our customers have wholly cooperated in our ongoing and expanding recycling programs.

In California, with general household and commercial materials such as metal, glass, plastic and paper now routinely recycled, the next target for recycling is organic materials – and, notably, food waste. We’re currently hard at work putting the systems in place to implement weekly residential curbside food recycling as well as greatly expanded commercial organics recycling.

Food waste recycling in particular is a vital need. According to statewide waste characterization studies, food waste contributes to a large percentage of the organic waste currently being sent to landfills. And it’s the organic materials in the landfills that emit methane gases that are contributing to climate change.

To comply with the organics recycling mandates, Harrison and our community partner Agromin are making progress on two local recycling/composting facilities:

  • MOUNTAIN VIEW in Oxnard is set to open in late 2021, to handle all source-separated food material.
  • AGROMIN LIMONEIRA in the Santa Clara Valley is in the final phase of the permit process for a major expansion. Once the permit process is completed, we will begin the construction phase. The existing Limoneira agricultural compost facility will expand to meet all the region’s organic waste recycling needs, making long-haul trips out of Ventura County unnecessary.

Current Legislation

The following is a rundown of the three most consequential state bills that affect new organics recycling efforts:

SB1383-graphic-horz-ej-harrison-industries-trash-hauler In September 2016, California Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law the landmark state Senate Bill 1383, establishing a sweeping statewide effort to substantially reduce emissions from methane and other so-called short-lived climate pollutants.

A highly ambitious measure, SB 1383 aims to reduce these emissions by greatly decreasing the landfilled organic waste that generates it. According to the bill, organic waste in 2025 must be cut by 75% of 2014 levels; also that year, California’s Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle) aims to divert no less than 20% of edible waste for further human consumption.

The bottom line is the reduction of the destructive greenhouse gases that are eating away at the upper atmosphere that protects our planet.

AB1826-graphic-horz-ej-harrison-industries-trash-haulerThis state Assembly bill requires businesses in California to work toward recycling all of their organic materials (i.e. yard waste and food waste).

The purpose of this bill is to divert material from the landfill, which emits methane, a potent greenhouse gas that traps heat in the atmosphere, contributing to climate change. As of Sept. 15, 2020, AB 1826 requires businesses that generate as little as two cubic yards of solid waste per week to take action to recycle their organic materials.

AB827-graphic-horz-ej-harrison-industries-trash-haulerThis law requires all businesses in the state that are involved in food waste recycling programs to have food waste recycling bins available to customers and/or employees.

As of July 1, 2020, businesses that are subject to the state’s mandatory organics recycling requirements and that provide products for immediate customer consumption (e.g. restaurants and convenience stores) are required to comply.


If you have questions on ways your business can comply most efficiently with state regulations, contact your city sustainability department, usually within the public works department.

For questions about trash and recycling collection, contact Harrison’s Donald Sealund at 805-647-1414, ext. 4318, or

Translate »