OLCC Suspends Bottle Return Requirement For Grocery Stores

Nov 17, 2020

Grocery stores in Oregon won’t have to accept bottle returns for the next couple of weeks.

Workers sort bottles and cans at a "Bottle Drop" location in Oregon City in this file photo. These standalone return centers will remain open during the two-week "freeze."
Credit Chris Lehman / KLCC

The Oregon Liquor Control Commission says it won’t enforce the requirement during the so-called “Statewide Freeze” enacted by Governor Kate Brown. The agency says its standalone “Bottle Drop” locations will continue to operate.

This is the second time this year that the OLCC has suspended the requirement. The first was in the spring, when the pandemic was first spreading.

Some grocery stores don't have to accept bottles and cans at any time, depending on their proximity to a Bottle Drop center.

The OLCC said that while stores won't be required to accept returns during the "freeze," which will last until at least December 2, there are permitted to do so if store managers determine it can be done safely. Regardless of whether a store is accepting returns, customers will still pay a ten-cent deposit on beverage containers.