Beverage Container Recycling in Saskatchewan
SARCAN Recycling provides social responsibility, environmental sustainability and community building through our network of recycling depots and processing plants across Saskatchewan.
SARCAN is the business division of SARC, the provincial umbrella association that provides services, training, consultation and leadership to community-based organizations. SARC started SARCAN in 1988 when aluminum beverage containers were introduced into Saskatchewan. The program is monitored by the Ministry of Environment's - Environmental Management Protection Act, as well as the Litter Control Designation Regulations. Since its inception, SARCAN has recycled over eight billion beverage containers and averages recycling over 400 million beverage containers each year. That amounts to over 19,000 tonnes of waste kept out of Saskatchewan landfills every year.
How are Beverage Containers Recycled?
Any beverage container that is charged a deposit at the time of purchase can be brought back to SARCAN for recycling and deposit refund collection. This includes all ready to serve beverage containers such as juice, milk, pop, alcohol, beer, etc. For a full list of refundable containers, please visit http://www.sarcan.ca/pages/deposit-beverage-containers.
Consumers can bring their beverage containers to one of 72 SARCAN recycling depots across 63 communities in Saskatchewan. There is also an option for Drop & Go, where consumers can leave their containers at the depot and receive deposit refunds electronically.
How is the Program Funded?
The majority of the beverage containers sold in Saskatchewan are legislated by the Government of Saskatchewan, which means that they are subject to a deposit that is paid by the customer upon purchase. When the container is returned to SARCAN, that deposit is refunded to the customer.
In addition to the deposit fee, there is an environmental handling fee (EHF) that is a non-refundable fee paid at the time of purchase. The environmental handling fees are collected by the Government of Saskatchewan, and these fees are used to help fund SARCAN Recycling.
A detailed list of the refundable deposits and EHFs is available on SARCAN’s website at http://www.sarcan.ca/pages/deposit-beverage-containers.
What are the Processes for Individual and Bulk/Group Returns?
There is a $75 limit for deposit refunds per person per week which is intended to stop the flow of containers from out-of-province. In order to return containers to SARCAN, individuals must be a resident of Saskatchewan and the containers must be purchased in Saskatchewan.
SARCAN’s $75 per person/per week limit only applies to individual customer orders. Exemptions to this limit are available to bottle drives or any organization returning beverage containers from things like a school, library, sports complex, or special events like weddings, concerts, festivals, etc.
Restaurants, bars, hotels, offices or any other business returning beverage containers are exempt for the $75 per person/per week limit.
For bulk returns and bottle drives, a drop-off time can be booked with a depot a couple of days in advance. Once the order is dropped off, SARCAN staff will count it and then a cheque can be picked up once it is ready. Visit www.sarcan.ca/locations to find depot contact information.
What Happens to the Beverage Containers?
All materials collected at SARCAN are recycled into everyday, useable products. No materials are ever put in landfills. Please watch the Incredible Journey of a Beverage Container to find out what happens to the materials recycled at SARCAN.
For more information, please visit www.sarcan.ca or call 306-933-0616.