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Beverage Containers Control Law

Bags of CansIowa's Beverage Containers Control Law, also known as the "Bottle Bill," helps reduce and clean up litter by recovering beverage containers for recycling.

Iowa's bottle bill deposit law covers all carbonated and alcoholic beverages. Consumers pay a five-cent deposit when purchasing a beverage container and receive a five-cent refund when returning the container to a store or redemption center.

The high level of participation by Iowa's businesses and Iowa consumers is the key to the program's success. An estimated 86 percent of beverage containers, or 1.65 billion, are redeemed annually in Iowa.

Bottle Bill Facts

  • It takes more energy to make a bottle from virgin materials than to make a bottle from recycled materials.
  • Energy savings from Iowa's Bottle Bill could heat 42,845 average Iowa households.
  • The current deposit law prevents litter and recycles 82,352 tons or 190,850 cubic yards of material per year - equivalent to a line of 784 large railroad box cars stretching more than 68,000 feet long.

How to get can and bottle refunds

The basic way the deposit/refund system works is for people to take their empty containers back to the stores where those products are sold. The only way a store can lawfully be exempt from redeeming cans and bottles is if it has an Iowa DNR “approved” redemption center. The store must have posted a certificate issued by the Iowa DNR that identifies the “approved” redemption center, its location and the hours it is open.

NOTE: The below list of Redemption Centers might have businesses that have closed without notifying the Iowa DNR and it may not have businesses listed that are open but that have not registered with the Iowa DNR.

Publications - Posters for retailers and redemption centers are in PDF format:

Documents and Forms