SB 1383 Business Outreach in the Age of COVID-19

Wide Chunk of Commercial Sector Still Does Not Recycle

Despite the adoption of AB 341 and AB 1826, and years of public awareness about environmental issues, a large portion of California commercial and multi-family complexes still do not recycle.

Even in jurisdictions that offer no-charge or heavily discounted recycling service, it is not uncommon to find that over half the businesses still do not participate in recycling.

SB 1383 Will Require All Businesses to Recycle

In January 2022, CalRecycle will require all jurisdictions to establish enforcement programs and assess penalties on non-compliant businesses.

CalRecycle is Putting Pressure on Jurisdictions

With the advent of SB 1383, CalRecycle is laser focused on ensuring that all businesses recycle.

In addition to making sure that local jurisdictions conduct outreach, education, and monitoring (as required by AB 341 and AB 1826), CalRecycle now wants jurisdictions to achieve 100% participation in the commercial sector.

CalRecycle has notified many jurisdictions throughout the State that their MCR and MORe programs are deficient. CalRecycle has also required these jurisdictions to prepare a Program Action Plan that sets forth specific steps and timeline on how and when the jurisdiction will fill the ‘gaps’ in their program.

Outreach via newsletters, webpages, billing inserts, and social media are no longer adequate. To fulfill the specific requirements of the Program Action Plan, jurisdictions must individually contact non-participating businesses and bring them into compliance.

The Role of Franchised Waste Haulers

The jurisdiction’s franchised waste hauler (or haulers) must offer recyclable and organic collection services. Therefore, waste haulers play an important role in reaching 100% compliance.

However, the state law allows businesses to comply with AB 341 and AB 1826 by using other methods that do not involve franchised waste haulers.

Compliance via Self-haul and Third-party Recyclers

Businesses can also comply with State law by self-hauling their recyclables, or using an independent third-party recycler to collect their recyclables.

These methods of compliance must be validated and documented. The only way to do this is to contact the business waste generator and verify information about its recycling practices.


In some cases, businesses may apply for an exemption to the State’s mandatory recycling laws. For example, if a business lacks sufficient space for recycling containers, or if it already recycles a significant portion of the waste stream through its current business practices, it may be eligible for an exemption.

Edible Food Recovery

SB 1383 requires that jurisdictions promote and monitor the recovery of edible food.

This includes identifying businesses that generate recoverable food (grocery stores, catering services, etc.), and monitoring brokers of edible food (food pantries, non-profits, etc.).

AB 827 – Businesses Must Provide Recycling Containers

AB 827 is intended to educate and involve consumers in achieving the State’s recycling goals by requiring businesses subject to AB 341 and AB 1826 to make recycling and organics recycling containers available to their customers. Full-service restaurants are exempt from this requirement as long as the restaurant’s employees collect and recycle customers’ waste materials. This law became effective July 1, 2020.

The Role of the Local Jurisdictions – Objective Enforcement

Jurisdictions are ultimately responsible for their business’ compliance with:

Jurisdictions will be required to update their municipal code to provide for the enforcement of mandatory recycling, SB 1383, and AB 827.

These enforcement responsibilities cannot be delegated to a franchised hauler.

To fulfill these responsibilities, jurisdictions must develop efficient systems to provide safe cost-effective outreach to commercial waste generators.

The Need for Safe Cost-effective and Objective Outreach

Conducting outreach via personal site visits is labor intensive and costly.

Due to safety concerns, outreach via personal visits are not always feasible.

Many jurisdictions need a safe and objective means of conducting outreach to commercial waste generators.

Outreach Services by MSW Consultants

MSW Consultants offers safe cost-effective and objective outreach services to commercial waste generators. Our outreach service includes a subscription for your jurisdiction to Minerva™, a cloud-based tool that facilitates cost effective outreach. Minerva™ enables us to share real-time information with the jurisdiction, and with the jurisdiction’s franchised hauler(s). Our outreach services include:

A Written Proposal

Please call or email us if we can be of assistance or if you have any questions.

If your jurisdiction could benefit from safe cost-effective outreach, we can provide you with a written proposal.

Case Study: City of Norco

In 2019 we conducted a commercial recycling survey for the city of Norco to help the City comply with the State’s mandatory recycling laws by determining the recycling status of its commercial and multi-family waste generators. Our staff and subconsultants visited 200 multi-family and commercial customers to determine their recycling status, estimate the quantity of recycled materials, hand out training materials, and discuss service alternatives.

We categorized each customer according to CalRecycle ‘s Electronic Annual Reporting process and generated outreach letters on behalf of the City. We visited each customer location, inquiring about recycling activities such as self-hauling or third-party recycling that would satisfy the requirements of AB 341 and AB 1826. We combined photos of trash containers and enclosures with pertinent details of recycling activity, noting overflowing trash or space restrictions to support exemption requests. We concluded visits with training information and alternative service level collection options. We provided the City with a detailed report which included the recycling status of each location, the types of materials recycled, and recommended service level changes.

Cities We Have Served

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