The City of Santa Barbara has collected more than 20,000 pounds of food scraps as part of a pilot program to recycle leftover food from South Coast restaurants and other major food providers. The scraps – collected from Cottage Hospital, Sojourner Cafe, City College, and the Coffee Cat, with Aldo’s and the Santa Barbara Zoo soon coming on board – are taken to a compost facility outside Santa Maria. City recycling engineer Eric Lohela said BFI has agreed to pick the food up for free. At the end of the year, Lohela hopes to have enough data to know how to implement a permanent food scrap program.

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