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  • Oil collection help

    Thought this may help some folks who are browsing the boards and trying to figure out how to talk restaurants into giving them their oil. Some may recognize this from another website out in Utah. I modified the language for my situation.
    In my area, there's two companies paying $0.15/lb for used oil (roughly $1/gallon) so I had to do what was necessary to persuade them. If they seem receptive to giving me their oil, I simply hand them a business card. So far, I've had some moderate success.



    Got Grease? I Can Take It Off Your Hands
    (And WE can contribute to saving the environment!)
    As part of my commitment to improving the environment in our community, I’m offering to collect oil on a regular basis from sites located in Tampa, Brandon, Lakeland, and Bradenton.

    Professional Service
    When I collect oil, I do it in style and with class. No messy oil spills or gross looking barrels here. I’ll provide you with a 55 gallon barrel to place at your site to deposit your oil into. I’ll then stop by on a regular, consistent basis and empty your barrel. How often I recover the used oil is up to you! I pride myself on keeping the customer happy and will get in, pick up your oil, and get out quickly and without leaving a mess. Not only do you get to contribute to an environmentally conscious service, but you also will get the added benefit of a personal touch with professional style. It’s in my best interest to keep you happy and I'll do everything I can to ensure that you are.

    100% Renewable
    In the world of oil collection services, I believe I offer a better alternative: instead of your oil being sold on the open commodities market, sprayed on food to fatten up pigs or other livestock, used for manufacturing soap or candles, or even sprayed on an open dirt road, I do something better with it!
    The oil I collect is used to create an energy substitute for petroleum diesel fuel. I filter your used oil, remove the water by adding heat, and then use this “clean” oil as an alternative to diesel fuel. When used in a diesel engine, vegetable oil greatly reduces the emissions introduced to the atmosphere which means reduced overall pollution. I like to think of it as my way to give back to the environment and I’m encouraging others with diesel powered vehicles to do the same.
    Studies show that vegetable oil can reduce particulate matter (black smoke) emitted by diesel engines by as much as 80-90%, carbon dioxide by as much as 80%, and drastically reduce hydrocarbons in emissions. It also has the added benefit of cleaning up the smell of the exhaust. Instead of the noxious smelling diesel fumes, a diesel burning vegetable oil smells more like a BBQ grill or french fries.

    I pay you!
    I’m all too aware that the big companies collecting spent cooking oil are paying $1/gallon ($0.15 per pound), and I’m offering the same price to you! If you’re required to maintain a contract with a professional company, allow me to collect 30-50% of your oil and let the other company collect the rest. You make the same money, contribute to protecting the environment, and keep the county happy.

    Thanks for taking the time to read this, and I look forward to doing business with you!


    --Snake
    2005 F-250 Harley Davidson Edition with a few mods

    60k on veggie oil and counting

  • #2
    Sounds good but if i were a restaurant owner and you left me a piece of paper like this, it would get tossed in the can. No offense at all intended but this is no different than junk mail in my box.Take the personal approach and you will score 10 times faster. A business card of some sort to leave with the manager AFTER you have sat down and visited with him would be a good idea.
    Not saying this would never work but i wouldn't think it would get alot of response.
    In my experience, the best way to score is to be seen ALOT in their store spending money. When the manager and waitstaff start welcoming you by your first name, its a guaranteed score.
    All of my oil scores have come about like that. I find a possible good source, look in there grease dumpster and decide if the quality is there and if so, i begin eating there once a week for a couple months. I visit with the managers a little the very first time i go in and they almost always remember me on my 2nd visit. By the forth visit i am almost ready to get to the punchline and basically explain to them what your letter says.
    Leave the waitstaff a heavy tip every time you eat there as well.

    I have never had one of them tell me anything about a contract with a rendering co. when i approach it like this and almost everytime i asked a manager who has never seen me in his store, he will tell me they have a contract.
    Last edited by Clay; 08-18-2008, 12:21 PM.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Snake View Post
      If you’re required to maintain a contract with a professional company, allow me to collect 30-50% of your oil and let the other company collect the rest. You make the same money, contribute to protecting the environment, and keep the county happy.
      Snake, is that legal? I actually called one of these collection companies, and the way their contract reads (so I'm told) is that the restaurant legally owns all of the grease that comes out of the restaurant...in their container or not. I even asked the guy about doing exactly what you say, and they said that's it is not legal. Maybe not true for all collection companies, though.
      2000 7.3 F-250 w/ V3

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      • #4
        Originally posted by GOON924 View Post
        Snake, is that legal? I actually called one of these collection companies, and the way their contract reads (so I'm told) is that the restaurant legally owns all of the grease that comes out of the restaurant...in their container or not. I even asked the guy about doing exactly what you say, and they said that's it is not legal. Maybe not true for all collection companies, though.
        Another reason to "know the manager"...they will break the rules a little bit to accomidate a good customer like you.

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        • #5
          Another good method is to keep any eye on the local events section of the paper or town bulletin boards, etc... Outdoor events/festivals are great places to score oil. I just took home nearly 100 gallons from a county fair last weekend. I just called the "for more information" number listed on the flyer and explained to the person on the phone that I would remove all cooking oil free of charge. The vendors were all happy because they didn't have to cart it home and find some way to get rid of it.

          Most of these folks are not restaurants so they don't have the resources to do so. Many of the food booths were fundraisers for the local Kiwanis or Lions club, so they were glad to see me. The woman from the 4H who I dealt with is now keeping my name on file for other functions the 4H has where there are food vendors, and I've already gotten dibs on the oil from next year's fair. Church fish frys, firehouse picnics, or functions at the local Elks Lodge, etc...are all great hits as well. The best part about oil like this is it's only seen maybe 3 or 4 days of use!!! Most oil I collect from restaurants is at least a week and a half old. I ran my CF rig for over two hours with the oil from the fair (after filtering through a t-shirt) and I only got a layer of gunk a mils thick.

          Originally posted by CHenry View Post
          Another reason to "know the manager"...they will break the rules a little bit to accomidate a good customer like you.
          I think in this day and age you do want to be careful though. Some of the grease haulers are getting mighty sore about this kind of thing. You do have to remember that it IS their livelihood. Consider this excerpt from Biodiesel Magazine by way of Darling International's website:

          ..Home brewers taking grease for personal use has been an issue for some time, but, the emergence of more organized groups petitioning restaurants for their yellow grease is beginning to surface as the real issue. “[They] are trying to develop a green appeal to restaurants who want their used cooking oil to go to a good environmental use, which is not a bad thing, in and of itself,” Gershen says. However, collection companies have already been working with biodiesel companies for some time, so the grease is often already going toward a good end‐use and restaurants may not realize that, he says. “The rendering industry are the original recyclers and don’t get the credit they deserve for that contribution,” Gershen says.

          Another concern for restaurants that decide to deal with a new, lesser‐known company is the possibility of a no‐show. Tellurian fields several calls each month from restaurants that have full grease bins on a Friday afternoon because the collection company they chose to use either stopped showing up or had consistency issues with pick‐up dates, Gershen says. The end result is that as prices continue to increase for both bulk grease and fuel, theft incidents will increase. Collection companies and biodiesel producers need to take measures to operate consistently and to educate grease providers in order to protect their product.


          In any event, you don't want to be the guy they prosecute for grease theft-if nothing else it would be embarrassing.
          Last edited by powerstroke73L; 08-18-2008, 02:27 PM.
          Currently dieselless!

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          • #6
            Just curious if anyone has ever looked into buying the waste oil from the collection companies? I know it's kinda like paying the enemy though.
            -Drew
            V3'd 2000 Excursion - gone but not forgotten
            2014 6.7L - smells nice

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            • #7
              Originally posted by fiveohpatrol View Post
              Just curious if anyone has ever looked into buying the waste oil from the collection companies? I know it's kinda like paying the enemy though.
              Depending on the spot price of yellow grease that day you could be looking at anywhere from $3.00-3.50 a gallon. Cheaper than diesel but far from cheap! Plus you'd probably be looking at having to do a bulk purchase, etc... As I pointed out before though, there's nothing wrong with a little good natured rivalry, but these guys really aren't "the enemy." They filled a need in the economy long before folks started running diesel engines on waste oil. WVO has a lot of uses for a lot of different things. However, If you can provide better, cleaner, faster service than a renderer, go for it.
              Currently dieselless!

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              • #8
                I think everyone here has some good points, but I have to agree with Clay. Knowing the right people is key. My source right now has been a long time friend of the family and he basically forfeited the money he was getting for the oil to help me out. I think he was being paid about $0.12/lb - not a fortune, but it was income for him.

                After a few visits to explain what I was trying to do (and the family spending a ton of money eating there all the time over the years ), he was on board and willing to help me out any way he could. I dropped off the barrel and off we went. So far it's worked out fine - I pick up about 30-35 gallons/week of reasonably clean oil. Not to mention the cubes he saves for me regularly.

                For now, it's plenty to keep me going. But, I've got a few other places to hit up, also family friends, so I can start stock piling up a bit. Better to have too much than not enough.
                Greasin & Grinin
                Vegi oil powered since Aug 08
                2006 F-250 PSD - CC, Lariat, 4X4 - Vegistroke converted 1/27/13!!
                2008 F-250 PSD - CC, Lariat, 4X4 - Sold
                2005 F-250 PSD - CC, Lariat, 4X4 - Sold

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by fiveohpatrol View Post
                  Just curious if anyone has ever looked into buying the waste oil from the collection companies? I know it's kinda like paying the enemy though.
                  Please be careful doing this, both times that we have done this we have gotten lye in the oil. Remember rendering company's don't care about the quality of the oil or what is in it.... buyer beware!


                  Now as far as finding new sources before the other guys do you can go the the city and get a list of people who are applying for a license to open an eating establishment get there contact info and hit them up before everyone else.

                  Also that if the resturant throws its oil in a collection bin behind the establishment and the collecting agency hasn't picked up the oil...... then the oil belongs to no one! That has been clarified by the United States Gov. Which is why bums are able to rifle through your garbage and you can't do a thing about it other than cuss or put your garbage inside your house.

                  Just our 2 cents into the pile.

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                  • #10
                    F the renderers

                    I deal solely with a small BIO-D plant(60,000) gallons annually,He is in the same same boat as us ,these are the people you want to be dealing with.He even saves me the good stuff ,and uses the other for Bio-D.There are alot of these mom and pop Bio guys around you just gotta look(ask your local farmers,thats what i did)oh yeah he only charges me $1.35 a gallon.............grease out
                    2000 7.3X V3 So much fun,so little time,Support small Oil,burn WVO,Free and greasy down the road I go!!!!!!!!!!completely self sufficient and proud of it. (Wood furnace.....X.......solar pontoon....solarsheat twins this summer.....I don't Know much.......I'm just a hillbilly with too many guns..............

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                    • #11
                      I think the EAT, Talk, and Pick up method is the best. When you are interested in them, they become quite friendly... and you get referrals.
                      Elvia the HandyMan
                      2000 F350 7.3 XL Dually utility/service truck
                      V3 March 2008

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                      • #12


                        I suppose I should have explained the entire process. I agree 100% with the eat, ask, collect theory. I'll carry these handouts with me as a "leave behind" after I've spoken with the manager and generously tipped my server.

                        --Snake
                        2005 F-250 Harley Davidson Edition with a few mods

                        60k on veggie oil and counting

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                        • #13
                          Fry shacks

                          If you are lucky enough to live in a tourist area try seasonal restuarants,around here the renders don't take care of them well ,my friend gets 55 gallons a week from a water slides kitchen(all fried).grease out
                          2000 7.3X V3 So much fun,so little time,Support small Oil,burn WVO,Free and greasy down the road I go!!!!!!!!!!completely self sufficient and proud of it. (Wood furnace.....X.......solar pontoon....solarsheat twins this summer.....I don't Know much.......I'm just a hillbilly with too many guns..............

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                          • #14
                            Art shows are another place like the fairs. My husband goes and talks to one or two of the venders at each show and they are more than happy not to have to cart it home. They take it right out of the fryers and put it back into the orginial cubies. And I go home with more oil than it took to get to the show.

                            Tanya

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                            • #15
                              Thats the way to go Tanya
                              Elvia the HandyMan
                              2000 F350 7.3 XL Dually utility/service truck
                              V3 March 2008

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