COVID-19 has had an unforeseeable impact on the grease traps of bars and breweries in Massachusetts. With over two hundred breweries and several hundred more bars in Massachusetts being forced to rethink the way they perform business, many weren’t prepared for the impact it would have on their business’s grease trap or lack thereof. With the state’s new regulations aimed at curtailing the spread of the virus, it’s time we take a look at COVID-19’s effect on Massachusetts bars, breweries, and their grease traps.
Governor Baker Tightens COVID-19 Restrictions on Breweries
During the COVID-19 pandemic, Massachusetts bars and breweries underwent a rebrand, reopening under the guise of pretzel and popcorn eateries. This was meant to exploit a loophole in the COVID-19 regulation prohibiting bars and breweries from reopening unless they served food. Therefore, to close this loophole, the state reconfigured Massachusetts’ Safety Standards and Checklist for Restaurants and redefined restaurants as an establishment that offers seated food service that’s prepared on-site and under a retail food permit.
How Does This Change Affect Bars, Breweries, and Their Grease Traps?
As of August 11th, Massachusetts regulations now state that alcohol cannot be served to a patron unless accompanied by a meal. Since bars and breweries usually don’t have the provisions or equipment to serve such high quantities of food, establishments in other states with similar restrictions – such as in Texas – are encountering a problem with maintaining their low-capacity grease interceptors or traps or lack thereof. Some establishments are even resorting to opening kitchens and installing grease traps on their premises.
The Importance of Increasing Grease Trap Maintenance and Collection
Although bars and breweries with grease traps aren’t impacted as much as those without, they do have to consider whether the capacity of their trap is outfitted to handle such an increase in fats, oils, grease, and solids (FOGS). For these businesses, they should treat this time as a perpetual peak season. That means being aware of grease collection according to the Quarter Rule, understanding how to diagnose wastewater flow problems, and knowing that an increase in foul odor likely indicates the grease trap is under strain. Increasing the frequency of maintenance and collection is a vital step.
It’s important owners and staff remain vigilant to counteract COVID-19’s effect on Massachusetts bars, breweries, and their grease traps. With the likely increase in food service, make sure you hire the right company to service your grease trap. We here at Food Grease Trappers have nearly three decades of experience performing maintenance and collection for businesses in our area. If you would like to know if your grease trap is under-capacity to handle the influx of FOGS or if you wish to inquire about our services, contact us today.