Fats, Oils, and Grease
What is FOG?
FOG is a combination of fats, oils, and grease. FOG includes cooking oil, animal fat and lard, grease, butter, tallow, shortening, and margarine which are all used in food processing and in the preparation of food. Kitchen wastes, along with water that has been used to wash kitchen equipment and floors, contain FOG.
Why regulate FOG?
Protecting public health and safety is a prime responsibility of Johnson County Wastewater. Sewer blockages and subsequent sewage spills pose a threat to public health and safety which can be prevented with proper grease management.
When FOG or food and wastewater containing FOG are poured down the drain, it cools and solidifies on the walls of the sewer pipes, restricting or clogging the wastewater flow. This can result in a wastewater backup into homes and businesses or discharge to the environment.
Johnson County Wastewater has determined that the most effective way to minimize FOG accumulation in sewers is to prevent the introduction of FOG into the sanitary sewer system in the first place. To realize this goal, the department has developed a Grease Management Program to regulate food service facilities.
The Johnson County Wastewater sanitary sewer system serves most cities in Johnson County and parts of Olathe. Click here and scroll to the bottom of the page to to find out if your business is located in the Johnson County Wastewater service area. Enter your address in the box and select "GO." At the top of the page in the "Search for:" box will be the address you entered. Click "Go" again. Your sewer provider will be listed in the Utility Information section.
Who Needs a Project Review?
All facilities serving or producing any type of food or beverage are required to have a project review. Submittal must include:
- the completed Johnson County Wastewater Commercial Sanitary Sewer Permit On-Line Application
- the Food Service Form B - Application
- a copy of the owner's or local contact's driver's license
- the Kitchen Equipment Plan
Please see below for further submittal requirements and the Grease Interceptor Design, Inspection, and Operation Requirements page for additional information.
- New Building/Construction - Submit all information listed above with a set of complete building plans.
- Tenant Finish - adding a grease interceptor In addition to the information listed above, field verify and label the flow line elevation of the existing plumbing header at the location the grease interceptor outlet connects on the plumbing sheet to confirm adequate depth and fall. This information shall be provided by the contractor performing the field verification and is required with the first submittal.
- Tenant Finish or Change of Business Ownership - reusing the existing grease interceptor The grease interceptor must be inspected by Johnson County Wastewater prior to the first submittal. Please contact the Permit Group at 913-715-8520 to schedule an appointment. The interceptor must be pumped and cleaned at the time of the inspection by a pumper of your choosing. In addition, the interior plumbing connections to the interceptor must be verified at the same time as the interceptor is empty. Running water (or minimum 10 gallons of water with a 1 gallon bucket) must be available. If water is not available, a separate pump out and inspection will be necessary when water is available. This inspection must be conducted by a Johnson County Wastewater inspector. Johnson County Wastewater will provide a list of items to be corrected with the plan review comments if applicable.
- Tenant Finish - decommissioning or removing an existing grease interceptor A Johnson County Wastewater inspection is required to determine the options available to the building owner. Please contact the Permit Group at 913-715-8520 to schedule an appointment. The interceptor must be pumped and cleaned at the time of the inspection. This inspection must be conducted by a Johnson County Wastewater inspector. Johnson County Wastewater will provide the options for permanent or temporary decommissioning to the owner prior to plan submittal. The selected decommissioning option must be indicated on the plan submittal: Temporary Decommission, Abandon in Place or Removal.
- Change of Business Ownership - with no grease interceptor Complete and submit all information listed in the first paragraph.
- Low Grease Discharge Waiver (LGDW) - A food service facility that qualifies as a low grease generating facility may request a waiver from installing a grease interceptor. Any food service facility that uses a deep fat fryer, a grill, a wok, a griddle, a counter-top fryer or any other device that uses fats, oils or grease for cooking purposes shall not be considered as low-grease generating or discharging facility and shall not qualify for a waiver. The LGDW permit must be renewed annually and LGDW facilities will be inspected routinely. To be considered, the facility must meet the following criteria:
1. Serves only ready-to-eat foods with no preparation at the facility, other than warming, including, but not be limited to: scoop-only ice cream shops, sandwich shops, popcorn stands, hot dog rollers, etc.;
2. Prepares only
a. Uncooked or unbaked food or meals that will be taken from the facility and cooked or baked at another location; or
b. Baked goods such as, but not limited to, cookies and pretzels;
3. Does not engage in more than a minimum amount of dish or pot washing;
Site Location Map and Property Lines:
- Go to http://maps.jocogov.org/ims/
- Enter the address in the “search for location” box above the map.
- Check the following “Layers” only:
- “Parcel Outlines” – under “Parcels”
- “Building Footprints”- under “Planimetrics”
- “JCW Sewer Lines” – under “Utilities”
- In the upper right hand corner find ‘Satellite’ with a drop down arrow, change the base map to “Google Map.” Due to clarity issues, do not use a satellite base map.
- Select the “Print” option. A window with the selected view will appear in a pop up.
- In the pop up, move the map around and zoom in/out as required to show the following:
- The entire building
- The entire lot
- The nearest cross streets with labels
- The sanitary sewer main]
- Print or save the image and add to the requested drawing sheet.
- If a key plan is required, show all tenant spaces within the building and indicate which space this tenant will occupy.
Annual Operating Permit Renewal
All grease interceptor operating permits expire and must be renewed annually. Facilities currently permitted by Johnson County Wastewater will receive a notice prior to permit expiration with renewal materials and instructions. To renew, please submit:
- Food Service Form A - Renewal
- Copy of the food service owner's driver's license
- Check payable to Johnson County Wastewater in the amount of $288.75
Permits are valid only for the year in which they are issued. There are no provisions for the proration of a license or refunding the licensing fees.
Grease Interceptor Pumping Variances
Interceptor Pumping and Cleaning is required at a minimum of once every 90 days for most establishments. A variance may be considered if you believe your interceptor requires less frequent pumping.
The following must be completed in order for Johnson County Wastewater to consider a pumping variance request:
- A current Johnson County Wastewater Grease Interceptor Operating Permit
- Food Service Form C - Pumping Variance Application
- Check payable to Johnson County Wastewater in the amount of $346.50
Once the application and fees have been submitted, the operator must have the interceptor pumped and cleaned while Johnson County Wastewater is present to begin the variance process. Please call Johnson County Wastewater's Environmental Compliance Manager at 913-715-6937 to schedule an inspection.