Soon, those who have been saving up their empty bottles and cans will be able to redeem them for money at the new BottleDrop Redemption Center in Roseburg.
The center is currently under construction at the old location of Coastal Farm & Ranch at 740 NE Garden Valley Blvd., Roseburg. It is tentatively scheduled to open on Nov. 21.
The new 24,000-square-foot center will include 10 return machines, a drop door for the green bags, a pay station where customers can receive money, a kiosk where customers can create accounts and a customer service desk. The facility will employ about eight people, according to Joel Schoening, community relations manager for the Oregon Beverage Recycling Cooperative. It will also include equipment to crush the aluminum, glass and plastic to prepare it for transportation to one of five plants for final processing.
“We’re excited to be there, and the BottleDrop Centers are a faster, cleaner and more convenient way to return containers than the old grocery store system,” Schoening said. “We hope it encourages more people to recycle.”
Customers will have three options for depositing their containers. They can collect their bottles and cans in green BottleDrop bags to drop off at the center to receive refunds through their BottleDrop Accounts, or they can return up to 350 bottles and cans per person per day using the reverse vending machines and get their refund at the on-site pay station. They also have the option to have a customer service associate hand count up to 50 containers for a cash refund.
Schoening said unlike curbside recycling, the BottleDrop has an effective sorting process so it is unaffected by the stricter recycling regulations in China.
“That’s one of the benefits of our system, we deliver a much cleaner product than the mixed container systems,” Schoening said.
The BottleDrop redemption center will be open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day while the drop door to deposit green bags will be open from 5 a.m. to 11 p.m.
As of now, retailers that sell containers covered in the state bottle bill and charge a deposit are required to take back the containers, but starting two weeks after Nov. 20, stores within 2 miles of the center will not have to accept them.
The are 12 participating stores in the redemption center zone that will no longer be required to redeem containers: Albertsons on Stewart Parkway, BiMart on Garden Valley Boulevard, Big Lots on Stephens, Fred Meyer on Garden Valley, the Rite Aid locations on Garden Valley Boulevard and Stephens Street, Safeway on Stephens Street, Sherm’s Thunderbird on Stewart Parkway, Walmart on Stewart Parkway and the Walgreens locations on Stephens Street and Garden Valley Boulevard.
Stores between 2 and 3.5 miles away from the BottleDrop Center will be able to accept only 24 containers per person per day. In this case, only the Costco on Stephens Street falls within that category.
However, small retailers, like Frank’s Garden Valley Mini-Mart in Roseburg, will still be required to take back the same types of containers they sell. Stores under 5,000 square feet that are within 2 miles of the center are only required to accept 24 containers per person per day, and small stores outside the zone will be required to accept 50 per person per day.
Frank Schuchard, owner of Frank’s Garden Valley Mini-Mart, said he thinks the BottleDrop is a good idea. But he’s concerned the increase in the bottle deposit from 5 to 10 cents last April has caused more people to dig through garbage to find containers to redeem.
Bottle returns double in Oregon since deposit rose
“When they raised it from a nickel to a dime, that changed the dynamics and what it’s done is doubled the value of anything in somebody’s garbage can,” Schuchard said. “It has driven the crime element of people coming into our store bringing the empties back that they take out of garbage cans.”
The Bottle Bill will be extended Jan. 1 to include all beverages except wine, liquor, dairy or plant-based milk, meal replacement beverages and infant formula.
Schuchard said he’s concerned his store will have to accept a large amount of the allotted containers after 6 p.m. when the center closes, and he hopes in the future no stores will have to accept bottles and cans.
For more information, visit www.bottledropcenters.com.