AUSTIN — Your favorite restaurants, grocers and farmers markets in Austin have to make some big changes starting this week.

They're now required to have programs to keep food from being tossed in the trash. It's all part of the city's effort to reach zero waste by 2040 by complying with Austin's Universal Recycling Ordinance (URO). According to the city, more than 85 percent of Austin's trash and recycling comes from commercial businesses, multi-family properties and food service businesses.

URO also requires that business owners and managers give regular education for employees, that they post informational signage and that they submit an online Organic Diversion Plan annually here.

The city is helping businesses look at ways to donate, compost or give extra food to farmers. Click here for more information. Two free trainings will be held this month:

  • Monday, Oct. 22 from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. at County Line on the Lake located at 5204 FM 2222
  • Tuesday, Oct. 30 from 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. at Alamo Drafthouse located at 1120 South Lamar Blvd.

You can RSVP online here.