More Bottle and Can Return Options Starting October 5th

Phase 2 of the Michigan bottle and can deposit return program will begin on October 5th. Some retailers have been unable to accept returns if they do not have certain machinery that processes the materials.

The new order from the Michigan Department of Treasury mandates that all “grocery stores, supermarkets, convenience stores, gas stations and other retailers with reverse vending machines must reopen their bottle return facilities and resume the collection of returnable bottles and cans to refund outstanding deposits.”

Phase 1 retailers were those that exclusively provided a return area in a separate area of the store.

The Michigan Department of Treasury is allowing retailers that don’t have mechanized bottle counters and rely on employees to count and sort the returns to start accepting cans and bottles at their discretion.

Safety precautions required of retailers include limiting returns to $25 per day per person, establishing special or limited hours of operation for return facilities, limiting the number of available and operating reverse vending machines, periodically closing for cleaning, and implementing any other procedures to maintain safety.

Reporting for WGRT – Jennie McClelland