A recycling center is an operation certified by the Department to accept empty beverage containers and pay CRV to consumers. Recycling centers are operated by independent businesses, not the State of California.
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The beverage container recycling program began in California in 1987 as a way to assure the return for recycling of a greater percentage of the beverage containers sold in the state. It is estimated that more than 300 billion aluminum, glass, and plastic beverage containers have been recycled since.
Any product sold in a container that is not aluminum, glass, plastic, or bimetal is excluded from CRV. These include:
Currently, state certified recycling centers pay a minimum of $1.65 CRV for aluminum cans; $1.31 CRV for clear PET plastic bottles; $0.58 CRV for HDPE plastic bottles (similar to the large water jugs); and $0.10 CRV for glass bottles. These CRV per pound rates are periodically adjusted, with new rates taking effect January 1 and July 1.
Yes, if the material is contaminated. Operators of certified recycling centers must inspect each load of containers to determine whether it is eligible for CRV. Recycling centers have the option to refuse to accept containers which, in their opinion, are excessively contaminated with dirt, moisture, or other foreign substances.