The Glass Packaging Institute (GPI) President Scott DeFife released the following statement regarding the decision of retailers to refuse to redeem bottles and cans in Iowa. “The GPI was pleased by Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds’s decision to enforce can and bottle redemption again in the state last month,” said Scott DeFife, President of the Glass Packaging Institute (GPI).
“Despite having more time to prepare for a resumption in redemption than any other bottle bill state, we are disappointed to see that certain retailers in Iowa are still outright refusing to honor the state’s decision. Fareway Stores, with the support of the Iowa Grocers Industry Association (IGIA), is flaunting the Governor’s order by not accepting items for redemption, a major misstep on the company’s part. Iowa residents have the right to redeem their cans and bottles at major retail outlets. This is merely another attempt to undermine the law that the IGIA has battled for years, using COVID-19 as an excuse to try and do an end-around the legislature, where they have lost prior battles.
“Recycled glass is a critical component of manufacturing supply chains, and material from bottle bill states like Iowa provide glass manufacturers with over 60 percent of the recycled material that is turned back into new glass jars, bottles and containers. The people of Iowa should be allowed to return their glass products to alleviate the burden on homes and benefit the hurting food and beverage supply-chain that relies on those redeemed bottles and cans for packaging needs. Fareway should reverse its decision and begin redeeming cans and bottles immediately. Bottle and can redemption can continue without posing a risk to employees or customers as long as all public health guidance is followed.”