SB 1383 - Food Recovery

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California Law Requires Donation of Edible Food

California State Law SB 1383 went into effect January 1, 2022 and requires certain Commercial Edible Food Generators to donate edible food to people in need and reduce organic waste they send to landfills. 

Why Recover Food?

Food recovery means collecting edible food that would otherwise go to waste and redistributing it to feed people in need. This is the highest and best use for food that would otherwise go to waste. Californians send 11.2 billion pounds of food to landfills each year, some of which was still fresh enough to have been recovered. While billions of meals go to waste, millions of Californians don’t have enough to eat. When you participate in food recovery, you are helping serve a vulnerable part of our community while playing a part in protecting our environment.

SB 1383 Places Commercial Edible Food Generators Into Two Tiers

Tier One

Deadline for compliance: January 1, 2022 

  • Supermarkets: A full-line, self-service retail store with gross annual sales of two million dollars ($2,000,000), or more, and which sells a line of dry grocery, canned goods, or nonfood items and some perishable items.
  • Grocery stores with a total facility size 10,000 square feet or more: A store primarily engaged in the retail sale of canned food; dry goods; fresh fruits and vegetables; fresh meats, fish, and poultry; and any area that is not separately owned within the store where the food is prepared and served, including a bakery, deli, and meat and seafood departments.
  • Food service providers: An entity primarily engaged in providing food services to institutional, governmental, commercial, or industrial locations of others based on contractual arrangements with these types of organizations.
  • Food distributors: A company that distributes food to entities including, but not limited to, supermarkets and grocery stores.
  • Wholesale food vendor: A business or establishment engaged in the merchant wholesale distribution of food, where food (including fruits and vegetables) is received, shipped, stored, prepared for distribution to a retailer, warehouse, distributor, or other destination.

Tier Two 

Deadline for compliance: January 1, 2024

  • Restaurants with 250 seats or more, or 5,000 square feet or more: An establishment primarily engaged in the retail sale of food and drinks for on-premises or immediate consumption.
  • Hotels with on-site food facility and 200 rooms or more: Any hotel, motel, bed and breakfast inn, or other similar transient lodging establishment.
  • Health facilities with onsite food facility and 100 or more beds
  • State agencies with a cafeteria with 250 or more seats, or 5,000 square feet or more
  • Local education agencies: A local education agency with an on-site food facility. Local education agency means a school district, charter school, or county office of education that is not subject to the control of city or county regulations.(with an onsite food facility).
  • Large venues: A permanent venue facility that annually seats or serves an average of more than 2,000 individuals within the grounds of the facility per day of operation.
  • Large events: An event, including, but not limited to, a sporting event, a flea market or a festival, that charges an admission price, or is operated by a local agency, and serves an average of more than 2,000 individuals per day of operation of the event, at a location that includes, but is not limited to, a public, nonprofit, or privately owned park, parking lot, golf course, street system, or other open space when being used for an event.

How to Comply

  • Donate the maximum amount of edible food that would otherwise be disposed.
  • Sign and maintain a contract or written agreement with food recovery services or organizations that will pick up or receive edible food.
  • Keep the following records:  
    • Copies of contracts or agreements with food recovery services or organizations that pick up or receive edible food.
    • Types of food being donated.
    • Pounds donated per month.
    • Frequency of donations.
    • Contact information of partner food recovery services and/or organizations.
  • Do not intentionally spoil food that is suitable for donation.
  • For large venues or large event operators that do not provide food services, but allow for food to be provided, require food facilities operating on site to comply with these requirements.
  • Accommodate site inspections by Napa County, including review of written agreements and records of donations.

More information on the requirements can be found on the CalRecycle website

Where and How to Donate Food

What Foods Should be Donated?

Only donate quality foods that are still good to eat, were safely handled and stored, that you would give a neighbor or close friend. Unusual shapes or sizes are okay, but no rotten or half-eaten foods.

Foods That Should Not be Donated

Leftovers such as a half eaten tray of noodles or sandwich, rotting produce, foods with opened or damaged packaging, alcoholic beverages. 

A current list of food recovery services and organizations serving Napa County’s SB 1383 mandated donors is below. 

Local Food Recovery Services and Organizations in Napa County

Abode ServicesPete Duenas, Kitchen Coordinator; [email protected] OR Wendi Moore, Community Engagement Coordinator; [email protected]South Napa Shelter can accept donations of prepared foods if they have been prepared in a commercial kitchen, stored and transported at food-safe temperatures. Larger quantities are preferred (full restaurant pans). We accept non-expired canned foods, preferring fruits, vegetables and proteins. We accept fresh and frozen meat and other proteins that have been stored at food-safe temperatures, uncooked grains and pasta, and fresh uncut fruit. Boxed cereal, but no breads or pastries please.
Community Action of Napa ValleyDonate Now!
Phone: 707-253-6128 [email protected]
Acceptable donations: bread/bakery, deli, dairy, meat produce, dry good (canned, packed shelf stable)
Feeding it ForwardPhone: 707-927-3213 [email protected]All donations must be unadulterated, kept following any required time/temp food standards and safe for human consumption. Acceptable donations from food generator businesses: Bread, Proteins, Dairy, Produce, Frozen food, Prepared food, Shelf stable food, or Equipment. 
Napa County Farmworker CentersGil Ortiz, CHDC Onsite Manager, 707-321-4961The Napa County Farmworker Centers can accept fresh produce, coffee, sliced bread, eggs, meats, milk, shredded cheese, eggs, oats, pinto beans, rice, tortillas, and some dry canned goods such as tomato puree, tomato sauce, crushed tomatillo.
Napa Valley College Basic Needs CenterJulie Hernandez, [email protected] & (707) 256-7621.Prepackaged foods are really popular with our students, such as packaged salads, sandwiches, premade 'to go' meals, etc. We also gladly take produce such as fruits and veggies, and fresh products like eggs and cheese. We are also in need of shelf-stable pantry items like canned goods, pasta, crackers, fruit juice, condiments, etc. 
Salvation ArmyPhone: 707 226 8150 Accepts cooking oils, proteins (including dairy, eggs, and plant based) fresh fruits/vegetables, canned vegetables, condiments, spices, and healthy grains/beans. Preference for produce, dairy items, eggs, and proteins.  Breads, baked goods, and deserts are accepted as well.


Click here for a model food recovery organization/service donation agreement 

Click here for a model tracking document

Model documents provided by CalRecycle 

Federal and State Law Provide Liability Protections for Good Faith Food Donors

Any food facility may donate food to a food bank or to another nonprofit charitable organization for distribution to persons free of charge.

No facility that donates wholesome food shall be subject to civil or criminal liability or penalty for violation of any laws, regulations, or ordinances.

A food facility that donates food will not be liable for any damage that results from the consumption of the donated food, regardless of compliance with any laws relating to the packaging, labeling, or storage after the donation.

A food facility must handle and store the food to be donated in a safe and sanitary manner. Food donated must be maintained in the same manner as food sold to customers.

Please refer to the Napa County Consumer Protection Team for safe food handling practices.