Residential Garbage/FoodCycle Collection

Residents receive weekly FoodCycle service separating you garbage and food scraps, helping to reach state mandated recycling levels.

Food Scrap Collection: choose your cart size

Tell us what size FoodCycle cart you need and we’ll provide a small, medium, or large split cart. Set it out on the curb by 7:00 am on your garbage pick-up day. Make sure the cart’s arrow is pointing toward the street.

Watch an 80 Second Video on How to FoodCycle in Sunnyvale

Watch a 2 Minute Video on How Our Split Cart Works in Sunnyvale

Program Details

Each single-family household receives a split cart for food scraps and garbage collection, a countertop food scraps pail to make separation more convenient, and outreach materials to explain the program. Households will also receive a roll of compostable plastic bags to line the countertop pail with. You can reuse produce, bread or other plastic bags as long as they are clear or even wrap the food scraps in newspaper and place them into the cart.


Pail Insert (ready to print) | PDF

FoodCycle Brochure (ready to print) | PDF

My garbage wasn’t collected! What happened?

See the reasons below. If pickup isn’t possible, we’ll leave a tag on your cart explaining why not. To understand more, call (408) 565-9900 or visit How to Get Rid of Anything.

  • Cart overfilled, lid won’t close.
  • There wasn’t a prepaid tag on the bag.
  • The cart wasn’t at the curb by 7 am.
  • Garbage was spilled on the ground.
  • Cart overloaded
  • It contained prohibited materials (auto parts, tires, hazardous or e-waste.)

What can be FoodCycled?

  • Fruits and vegetables trimmings including peels, pits and cores
  • Dairy products
  • Eggs and shells
  • Meat, bones, shellfish and shells
  • Tea bags, coffee filters and coffee grounds
  • Uneaten food scraps and leftovers
  • Spoiled food
  • Frozen and freezer-burned food (without the packaging)

Unacceptable Items Include:

Items you should place in the garbage side of the cart (black side) include:

  • Paper products include plates, cups and containers
  • Compostable paper ware
  • To-go containers
  • Pizza boxes
  • Paper towels
  • Tissues
  • Sanitary wipes

What if the garbage doesn’t all fit in my cart?

You can:

  • Buy an extra garbage tag for $6 and attach the sticker around the neck of a 35 gallon plastic bag.
  • Schedule an on-call curbside collection for up to 2 yards of extra garbage and 2 bulky items. (2 per year)


Where do I buy extra garbage tags?

At local supermarkets and the City Utilities Dept.

What are prohibited materials?

See list below for items we cannot pickup in your cart. If you need to dispose of any of the prohibited materials below, refer to Household Hazardous Waste or call the Sunnyvale Recycling center (SMaRT Station®) at (408) 752-8530.

  • computer monitors and televisions (cathode ray tubes)
  • fluorescent light bulbs or tubes
  • oils (other than used motor oil)
  • hazardous materials or products
  • caustic, corrosive or toxic chemicals
  • paints and other liquids
  • tires
  • auto parts
  • large dead animals (larger than a cat)
  • dirt or sod
  • “Sharps” like needles or syringes

Needles, Syringes & Lancets – Sharps:

Please ask your pharmacy or health care provider to provide you with a specially-designed “sharps” container. When this is full, you can bring it to our SMaRT Station®: 301 Carl Rd. Thank you for helping protect our workers.

Additional Resources About FoodCycling:

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