Michiganders Sitting on Estimated $60M Worth of Bottle Returns

With recycling centers closed, people are starting to see their bottle and can returns pile up. 

“When we kind of look at it, it’s kind of Michigan’s money,” says Shayna Schupan-Barry, director of governmental affairs at Schupan & Sons Recycling.

Schupan & Sons Recycling, one of the largest beverage container recycling companies in Michigan, predicts Michiganders are sitting on nearly $60M worth of unredeemed bottle and can deposits.

“We estimate based on last years that there would be over 600 million containers that people have paid their dimes on and then have not been able to bring them back to the stores,” Barry says.

As the bottles pile up at home, Barry says instead of throwing them away, people should donate to local organizations: “It’s generous of people to be willing to donate the dimes to charities.”

In Scottville, the police department is collecting returnables. On Tuesday, they held a can drive to fix up MacPhail Field.

Scottville Police Chief Matt Murphy says, “One of the positive things Scottville has here is MacPhail Field and we really want to keep that going… and we thought this would be a good time to do a bottle drive.”

Each bottle or can is a dime going towards a new pavilion and sports field.

Justin Coolman, supervisor at MacPhail Field, says, “I think people are like let’s donate this to a good cause, we have all of these trash bags of cans in the garage that we can’t do anything with, so let’s donate them to a good cause.”

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