The Legault government is launching seven pilot projects to pave the way for its major deposit expansion project in Quebec, which targets almost all beverage containers, including water and wine bottles.

The objective is to test which system will be the most efficient. Ultimately, Quebec estimates that 4 billion containers (from 100 ml to 2 l) will be recovered annually.

These seven pilot projects will be spread across six cities: Granby, Châteauguay, Trois-Rivières, Mont-Laurier, Terrebonne and Montreal.

At the targeted locations, residents can return all types of beverage containers to the same location: they therefore do not need to bring their wine bottles to the SAQ and their empty water bottles to the supermarket.

The projects were presented Tuesday morning by the Minister of the Environment and the Fight against Climate Change, Benoit Charette, and Sonia Gagné, President and CEO of RECYC-QUÉBEC, in a Maxi supermarket in the Ahuntsic district of Montreal.

You could see machines installed near the entrance to the supermarket that could gulp all kinds of bottles. They recognize the inserted container thanks to the barcode on the label and at the end they give a paper receipt that can be exchanged for cash at the store’s cash registers.

Given the space constraints, in other places, the machines will, for example, be installed in containers placed in parking lots.

In the context of the pilot projects, only aluminum cans and plastic and glass soft drink bottles as well as beer bottles are reimbursed – as is already the case.

But new types of containers are being added: bottles of wine and spirits, water bottles, juice or milk containers are accepted under the pilot project, but will not be reimbursed for the moment. However, they will be in 2022.

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The pilot projects have recently started and are to last six months. The final reform of the deposit is due to enter into force by the end of 2022.

Minister Charette specified that everything that is recovered “must be valued”, that is to say that the material will be used to make other beverage containers or other objects.

So many bottles that will not end up in the trash, he said.

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