Return-It Blog

Milk & Plant-based Beverage Containers in the Deposit System Starting Feb 1

Starting on February 1, 2022, British Columbians can head to their local Return-It collection site to responsibly recycle even more material for a 10-cent deposit refund. Clean and empty ready-to-drink milk and plant-based beverage containers, such as oat, almond, and soy, will now be included in the deposit system at over 170 Return-It collection sites across B.C. This is the result of a Government of B.C. regulation change, implemented through the CleanBC Plastic Action Plan.

“B.C. continues to lead the way in protecting the environment and extended producer responsibility performance in Canada,” said Allen Langdon, President & CEO of Return-It. “Now British Columbians have even more incentive to recycle their empty milk and plant based beverage containers and keep plastics and other beverage containers out of our landfills, oceans and waterways. But we can’t do this alone – we encourage everyone to participate by returning their empty beverage containers for recycling. In B.C., we are fortunate to have many ways to return beverage containers for recycling and divert them from our natural environment.”

As of February 1, a 10-cent deposit will be applied to all ready-to-drink milk and plant-based beverage containers. Consumers can redeem their full 10-cent deposit refund on these containers when recycling at Return-It collection sites province-wide. Return-It will only accept milk and plant based beverage containers with best before dates after February 1, 2022.

“BC’s dairy processors are committed to environmental stewardship and supporting solutions that protect our environment and keep our planet clean. We look forward to working with Return-It in continuing to divert material from landfill and waterways,” said Tony Gusikoski, Chair of the Western Dairy Council, the association that represents B.C.’s dairy processors.

Accepted containers include clean and rinsed ready-to-drink milk and plant-based beverage containers, such as milk, oat, almond, soy-based beverages, and more. Only clean containers will be accepted for returns so consumers are encouraged to rinse out containers before returning them. Modified milk products or milk products that are not normally considered beverages, such as meal replacement beverages, coffee additives, whipping cream and drinkable yogurt, are not eligible for a 10-cent deposit refund.

Return-It asks all British Columbians to participate by visiting their local Return-It collection site to recycle and receive their deposit refund for empty milk and plant based beverage containers. Milk or plant based beverage containers put in the residential and curbside (blue box) recycling bin, will not be eligible for a deposit refund.

Did you know?

Return-It provides convenient, efficient and environmentally sustainable collection networks for everyone in B.C.

There are over 170 Return-It collection facilities across B.C. This means that 98 per cent of residents in B.C. have access to a convenient and easy-to-use Return-It collection site within 10 kilometers of where they live.

Return-It recycles approximately 1 billion beverage containers a year, saving enough energy to power more than 40,000 homes for a full year. When we recycle, we are not just saving reusable raw materials - we are saving energy, trees and clean air.

Plus, every plastic beverage container is responsibly recycled right here in B.C. and Alberta, where they’re cleaned and broken down into plastic pellets that can be used to make new plastic bottles.

Questions about this blog post? Please contact us at or 1-855-350-2345 for more information.