Edible Food Recovery

Edible Food

What is “edible food”? Edible food is defined as food that is safe to eat for human consumption. This may include non-perishable and unspoiled perishable food at the end of its shelf life.

Food Recovery

What is “food recovery”? CalRecycle defines food recovery as collecting edible food that would otherwise go to waste and redistributing it to feed people in need. This type of food is salvaged from places such as restaurants, grocery stores, produce markets, and/or dining facilities and is distributed to local food programs.

The recovered food is edible but may not be sellable. Products that are at or past their “sell by” dates or are imperfect in any ways such as a bruised apple or day-old bread, for example, can be donated by grocery stores, food vendors, restaurants, and farmers markets. Often, restaurants and markets discard unused or unsold food into the waste stream.

According to Contra Costa County Health Services, approximately 1 out of every 6 people in Contra Costa County and in California are “food insecure”, which means individuals and families struggle to find their next meal.

Donating Food

Our partners at RecycleMore have identified Food Recovery Organizations available to collect edible food in West Contra Costa County. If you would like to partner with one or more food recovery organizations, refer to the list below.

NOTE: Businesses that source and contract with food recovery organics may receive tax benefits for their donations and are protected from liability lawsuits. Please speak to your tax advisor as well as refer to laws around donating food and the specific acts:

California Good Samaritan Food Donation Act (AB 1219)

Bill Emerson Good Samaritan Food Donation Act since 1996

Contra Costa County Health Services Department has developed tools and information for business to donate food successfully and safely. Please refer to their website for more information on donating food safely.