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What to do with the parts of your Thanksgiving dinner you couldn't eat

San Antonio Solid Waste department shares tips for properly disposing of food scraps so they don't become a gross mess.

SAN ANTONIO — For those of you still cleaning up after the holiday, San Antonio's department of waste management wants to remind residents to make use of it's services for a more sustainable holiday.

Nuts, shells, stems, husks, trimmings, cores, peels and rinds, all those scraps and byproducts of cooking your thanksgiving dinner can qualify as recycling. But only when put in the green "organics" bin. That’s because they will be processed into compost instead of ending up in a landfill.

Officials recommend using paper bags lined with shredded paper or paper towels to collect food waste. Food-soiled paper can also go in the bin. Scraps of meat and bone up to about the size of a turkey carcass will also be accepted. They suggest placing the bags in the freezer until collection day.
“The advantage of that is the food scraps are not going to generate much smell,” said Nicholas Galus, Assistant Director of the San Antonio department of Solid Waste.

“So, the ick-factor is not necessarily there as it would be in other instances,” he said.

According to the The Department of Solid Waste Management, compost made through the organics program is available for purchase from Atlas Organics, 8963 Nelson Rd, but compost is often donated to school and community garden projects, city parks and other beautification projects in San Antonio.

Residents of San Antonio can also reach out to the Solid waste department for a kitchen bin to help manage their food scraps.

“So if that's something that you're interested in you can contact us and we'll try to make arrangements to try to get you a kitchen bin," Galus said.

For those who deep fried their turkey, spent cooking oil is accepted at two facilities in San Antonio, one at 7030 Culebra which is open Tuesday through Friday from 8 a.m.- 5 p.m. and Saturday 8 a.m. - 12 p.m. and another at 1800 Wurzbach Parkway, 78216, which is only open the first Friday and Saturday of each month. You’ll find more info here and more information on San Antonio’s composting programs here.