Beverage Container Recycling: Transporting to the Depot

Whether you are planning to do it yourself or if you’re looking for a recycling service to pick up your empty beverage containers, deciding how you are going to return them can make or break the success of your beverage container recycling program.

With more than 220 Depots in Alberta, recycling beverage containers is convenient. Whether you're running a recycling program in a large city or small rural community, it's easy to keep your empty beverage containers out of the landfill.

Do it yourself

Bringing your empty beverage containers to a local Depot in your city or town, instead of using a pick-up service, can be the simplest way to get your refund and make sure containers are properly recycled.

You can also ask your Depot operator about beverage container recycling resources or programs that might be available to you. Through local Depots, Alberta’s beverage container recycling industry offers a number of partnership grant programs and helpful free tools such as bottle drive how-to guides and door hangers.

Here are some things to consider before visiting a Depot to make your visit go more smoothly:



Some things to consider:

  • Ensure your containers are empty
  • Give the containers a quick rinse, especially milk containers
  • Leave tabs and labels on
  • Confirm the hours of operation at your local Depot
  • Remember that Saturday is usually the busiest day
  • You can pre-sort and count your containers. Depots will do it for you, but if you separate containers by size (1 L and less and over 1L) it will be a faster and smoother process
  • Please take home all bags and boxes to reuse or recycle them

Pickup agreement guide

Make sure your new partnership is set up for success. Finding a great fit between your recycling program and a convenient, reliable recycling service provider who will pick up your empty beverage containers can be the key to a happy recycling future. Setting some ground rules in advance can help set you up for success between you and your pick up service.

Successful recycling pick up agreements can include, but are not limited to:


Exchange full contact information, including names, contact personnel and addresses.


Clarify who has access to a property, and how or when that access should occur. Also decide if that access is transferrable to other people within an organization.

Collection Frequency

Choose a pick up frequency. It could be daily, weekly, monthly or on-call. Also decide if there are any minimum or maximum volumes associated with each pickup.


Some pickup services offer items such as bins, bags, bag stands and signage. Determine what may be provided and for what cost.