Food Service Establishments (FSEs)

Fats, Oils & Grease (FOG) Ordinance Requirements & Guidance

The fats, oils, and grease (FOG) Ordinance sets forth requirements for food service establishments to aid in the prevention of sanitary sewer blockages, obstructions, and overflows due to the contribution and accumulation of fats, oils, and grease (FOG) into the City sewer system.

FOG requirements for food service establishments (FSEs) include the proper grease control equipment (GCE) design, sizing, installation, maintenance cleaning frequency, minimum of annual inspection and certification of all GCE by a City certified grease waste hauler (GWH) or plumber, implementing best management practices (BMPs), and associated record keeping.

Contact : FOG Office at 334-615-4454

Applying for a New Business License

Any change of ownership of existing FSE or FSE applying for a new business license shall have grease control equipment (GCE) as approved by the City’s FOG Program prior to obtaining the FOG Program Inspector’s signature on a business license compliance form. Owners of commercial property will be held responsible for installation of City approved GCE.

General Fats, Oils, and Grease (FOG) Permit

All FSEs fall under a "General Fats, Oils, and Grease (FOG) Permit" for authorization to discharge commercial wastewater from FSE food preparation and kitchen service areas to the City’s sanitary sewer collection system. View or download a copy of the "General FOG Permit" (PDF). All new FSEs shall complete a "FSE FOG Inquiry Form" which shall be the application for a "General FOG Permit". View or download a copy of the FSE FOG Inquiry Form (PDF).

Best Management Practices (BMPs)

All FSEs are required to implement BMPand to display "BMP" and "No Grease" posters in the kitchen area. Posters may be obtained from the FOG Program.

Record Keeping

FSEs shall keep records on all grease control equipment (gravity grease interceptor and/or hydro-mechanical grease interceptor) maintenance, cleaning, and repairs on site for a minimum of 3 years. The records must be made readily available for inspection by the City’s FOG Program.

Cleaning Grease Control Equipment

Grease traps (hydro-mechanical grease interceptor (HGI)) shall be completely cleaned of fats, oils, and grease and food solids at a minimum of every thirty days. If the FOG and food solids content of the grease trap are greater than 25%, the grease trap must be cleaned as frequently as needed to prevent 25% of capacity being occupied with FOG and food solids. A written record (Food Service Establishment Grease Trap Self-Monitoring Checklist Form F) of grease trap cleaning and maintenance shall be maintained onsite at the FSE and provided to the City upon request. View or download the Food Service Establishment Grease Trap Self-Monitoring Checklist (Form F) (PDF).

All gravity grease interceptors (GGIs) shall be cleaned at a minimum of every 90 days or when they reach 25% capacity on the interceptor’s inlet side. This is referred to as the "25% rule". View or download the guidance on the "25% rule" (PDF). FSEs having a gravity grease interceptor (GGI) are required to maintain a Gravity Grease Interceptor Inspection Self-Monitoring Checklist (Form G) to ensure compliance with the "25% rule". Compliance with the 25% rule will require mandatory staffing measurements of the GGI. View or download the Gravity Grease Interceptor Inspection Self-Monitoring Checklist (Form G) (PDF).

The FSE shall only use a City of Dothan approved certified grease waste hauler company to clean/pump a gravity grease interceptor (large tank usually in the ground outside that receives the kitchen wastewater and retains the FOG and food solids). View or download the Current List of the City Approved Certified Grease Waste Hauler Companies (PDF). This requirement is effective July 1, 2016.

FOG Program Surcharge Fee

A monthly "FOG Program Surcharge Fee" will be added to each FSE’s sewer service bill. The FOG Program surcharge fee will be based on the FSE classification. The FSE classification FOG Program surcharge fees will be as follows:

(1) Class 1: $11.84 per month

(2) Class 2: $23.68 per month

(3) Class 3: $35.51 per month

(4) Class 4 and 5: $47.35 per month

The FOG Program surcharge fees shall increase by 2.85 percent starting October 1 of the year following approval of this FOG Ordinance and then increase by 2.85 percent each October 1 thereafter, or as modified based on Consumer Price Index (CPI), whichever is greater. 

Grease Control Equipment Inspection & Certification

All FSEs are required to have their grease control equipment (GCE) inspected and certified at a minimum of annually by a City of Dothan GCE certified GWH or plumber accordance with Sections 102-369 (f) and (g) of the FOG Ordinance. View or download the Gravity Grease Interceptor Certification (Form A) (PDF). View or download the Grease Trap Certification (Form B) (PDF). View or download the Approved Company List to Perform GCE Work in Dothan

Alternative Grease Control Equipment (GCE– The FOG ordinance allows the use of alternative grease control equipment. For instance, alternative GCE can be considered for existing buildings where the recommended equipment that is the best solution for the food service establishment (FSE) classification can't feasibly be installed. When an FSE cannot install the minimum acceptable size grease control equipment for their specific class, FOG program personnel may recommend an acceptable alternative. However, if that recommended alternative is not acceptable, the FSE may propose an alternative system. It is the responsibility of the FSE to show that the proposed alternative is of sufficient size considering all kitchen plumbing fixture units, the discharge plumbing pipe diameter for each fixture unit, storage capacity, type of facility, and has adequate retention time. The FSE's engineer, architect, a licensed plumber, or contractor must attest that the proposed alternative is adequate. We strongly recommend that one of these spreadsheets (XLS) be used for that purpose and be submitted along with an application (PDF). If not, documentation (including certification) for the proposed alternative must be submitted along with the application (PDF). The proposed alternative will be reviewed for consistency with ordinance intent.

FOG Related Links for FSEs

To view or download FSE FOG related PowerPoints, Forms, and additional information, view the Downloadable PowerPoints. 

Downloadable PowerPoints 

FSE Employee FOG Training PowerPoint Slide Show (Animated Kiosk) (PPT)

Downloadable FOG FormsNo Grease

FSE FOG Inquiry Form (PDF)

FSE Grease Trap Self-Monitoring Checklist (Form F) (PDF)

FSE Gravity Grease Interceptor Inspection Self-Monitoring Checklist (Form G) (PDF)

GGI 90-Day Cleaning Frequency Requirement Waiver Form (PDF)

Gravity Grease Interceptor Certification (Form A) (PDF)

Grease Trap (Hydro-Mechanical Grease Interceptor) Certification (Form B) (PDF)

Approved Company List to Perform GCE Work in Dothan

Fats Oils and Grease

Downloadable Additional FOG Information

FOG Ordinance.PDF

Enforcement Response Guide.PDF

General Fats, Oils, and Grease Permit (PDF)

New FOG Rates Effective 10-01-22

Fact Sheet - Small Business Loans for FOG Equipment.pdf

FSE Grease Equipment Sizing Formula Calculation (requires Excel).xlsx

25% Rule Procedure (PDF)

25% Rule Illustrated Example (PDF)

25% Rule Example Calculation (PDF)

FSE Best Management Practices (BMPs) (PDF)

Cleaning a Small Grease Trap (Instructions) (PDF)Fats Oils and Grease Creatures Opens in new window

Frequently Asked Questions by FSEs (PDF)

FSE Classifications (1Through 5) (PDF)

Grease Interceptor Cleaning Interval Myth and Fact (PDF)

Recycling Myth and Fact (PDF)

FOG Science (PDF)

Sink Strainers (PDF)

Why Clean Small Grease Traps Frequently (PDF)