Glass containers, cartons or plastics, and many other packages are now accepted at the Cap-de-la-Madeleine Deposit Center. The extended deposit pilot project launched by Quebec is being tested so far.
• Read also: Expanded instructions: Quebec launches seven pilot projects
The expanded directive aims to ensure that by the end of 2022, a new and more efficient method of recycling will be launched throughout Quebec. To do this, seven pilot projects were launched on Wednesday, including the Trois-Rivieres project, in Mauritius.
While some cities like Montreal use machines, in Cap-de-la-Madeleine customers are personally welcomed into the center. Employees are also responsible for sorting containers manually.
What also distinguishes the center from other places is that the staff is provided by the Integrated Center for Health and Social Services (CIUSSS).
Head of the Community Work Integration Service for Intellectual Disabilities and Autism Spectrum Disorders, Julie Valois, explained that six “users”, and thus staff, are responsible for running the center daily, accompanied by a supervisor.
They are assigned all kinds of tasks, from customer service to sorting, depending on their skills.
“When we arrive in the morning we always start with the cleaning,” replied one of the employees, Kevin Boissfert. He also takes care of the cash register, disinfecting and storing bottles with the help of professional nanny Tahila Jourdain.
Since Thursday, the center has already received quite a few containers targeted by the Quebec project. “We take whatever is not registered, but it will be registered from the end of 2022, but there will be no money back,” said Stefan Lakas, director of public and government affairs at the Food Retailers Association.
Since customers do not pay a deposit on these containers, at this time, no money is returned to them. This is the principle of getting the consumer used to generating returns, according to Mr. Lakas.
Currently, 71% of containers are recycled by consumers. By 2025, the goal is to reach 75%, and then 90% by 2030. In short, Quebec wants to recycle about four billion containers annually.
“It’s almost three times the size we have now, so we have to have solutions other than stores, because stores can’t accommodate that size,” said the CEO, Canadian retailer Mark Fortin.
According to a study by Recyc-Québec, 91% of households said they would be willing to take out lockers as part of an extended locker project. Some people still express doubts.
“It’s less easy than going straight to the grocery,” said one of the citizens. “I think there will be a little less people who will benefit from this. Another said.
But despite the skepticism, it’s not the customers that are missing from the depository center. Buildings fill up quickly, even too much.
In anticipation of new containers that will be presented by customers, the center is already planning to increase its area. “We will set up facilities to ensure that when the residents of Trois-Rivieres bring back containers, there is space as well as staff,” said Stephane Lacasse.
It is even in its plans to partner with Bellemare Group to dispose of bottles, as well as other companies.