The Impact of Deposit Return Systems on Beverage Sales, July 2023

Evidence-Based Insights From a Global Study

For decades, the beverage industry has resisted the adoption or expansion of deposit return systems (DRS) for beverage containers, citing concerns about potential negative impacts on beverage sales.

To assess the validity of this claim, CRI and Reloop compiled and analyzed per capita packaged beverage sales in existing DRS markets before and after the systems were introduced or expanded, or the deposit amount was increased, using real-world case studies across the globe based on actual, sourced data points.

Our analysis indicates there is no definitive evidence that the introduction of new or changes to existing DRS in and of themselves impacts sales. We hope these study results reduce beverage industry opposition to DRS, enabling the adoption and expansion of programs that can get more recycled material into the supply chain while reducing litter, marine debris, energy use and carbon emissions.

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Learn how CRI made a difference in 2023 through high-profile initiatives, legislative analysis and advocacy, and education and collaboration.



Bottled Up: Beverage Container Recycling Stagnates (2000-2010)


As part of our thought leadership and mission to help improve beverage container recycling in the U.S., CRI periodically performs an analysis of beverage container sales and recycling rates, and publishes the information in the form of an authoritative report for use by decision-makers and recycling advocates. The 2013 edition of this signature report is Bottled Up: Beverage Container Recycling Stagnates (2000- 2010).

Download the free report and stay tuned for CRI's sequel to Bottled Up:
Tipping Point: Beverage Container Wasting, Plastic Pollution and
the Failed Promise of Curbside Recycling

Interested in state-specific or U.S. data that serves as the foundation for CRI reports?

The Beverage Market Data Analysis (BMDA) produced by CRI includes the most thorough information available on beverage container sales, recycling and wasting data – providing government, industry and environmental organizations with analytical and predictive tools not available elsewhere.

Reports for specific states and the nation as a whole are available for purchase. The 2022 edition of the BMDA covers the 2019 data year.

Learn more about these packages and purchase information on our BMDA website page

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