Grease Contractors Association set up to battle FOG
The Grease Contractors Association (GCA) has been formed to bring together specifiers, installers and maintainers of grease management systems that are battling with fats, oil and grease (FOG) in commercial and industrial kitchens.
Fats, oil and grease in sewerage networks and treatment works can cause blockages that lead to costly interventions and disruption to both to customers and the general public. It is hoped the new body, which is made up of those directly involved in grease management, will help improve industry standards and build better understanding of the factors at play in FOG build-up.
The GCA, set up in association with British Water, currently has eight members and is open to businesses working directly in grease management, whether in installation, maintenance or manufacture.
The association’s first objective is to draw up a code of practice for members that will cover service requirements, waste management, site evaluation, and health, safety and hygiene in food establishments.
By bringing together a group of frontline experts it is also hoped to add to the scientific understanding of the challenges posed by FOG. The aim is to create a practical forum, which is ‘technology neutral’ - not favouring one brand or method of grease management over another, but looking for the most effective practices for all.
In the longer term the GCA will act as the voice of the industry, dealing directly with both UK and European government bodies, advising regulators and working to increase public awareness. It will work closely with representatives of the food, restaurant and catering industries.
Mike Goodbourn, owner of GMG Grease Management and founder and chairman of the new association, said: “In many ways there are no greater experts than people who are dealing with this problem on a daily basis – so the Grease Contractors Association could significantly add to our knowledge of how to deal with and prevent problems caused by fats, oil and grease.
“FOG is a growing problem and yet there has been very little comprehensive scientific research done into the different methods of dealing with the issue. It can be hard for the owners of commercial and industrial kitchens to know which is the best way to deal with the issue.”
Martin Fairley, a founder member of the British Water FOG Forum and an advisor to the new association, said population growth, the popularity of take-away and restaurant food, climate instability and a lack of public understanding of fat disposal had all contributed to a “perfect storm” making FOG an increasingly tricky issue, both for commercial caterers and for the water industry.
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