Better Ask Barry: Where can I get a CRV refund?

"Recycling Mom" in Santa Cruz wants to know

BETTER ASK BARRY: Where can I get a CRV

SALINAS, Calif. - A Santa Cruz woman who calls herself ‘Recycling Mom’ wants to know where she can recycle aluminum cans and plastic bottles to get her CRV refund.

The California Redemption Value, or CRV, was established in 1986 as a fee imposed on beverage distributors to encourage recycling.

Like many fees, it is eventually passed on to consumers. Shoppers pay five cents for containers smaller than 24 ounces, and ten cents for larger containers.

You can return your bottles and cans for a refund, but only at designated locations.

Curbside recycling offers convenience, but no refund.

This summer, “RePlanet” shut down its 284 California recycling centers, including its location near Costco in Santa Cruz.

That leaves just three companies in Santa Cruz County that accept containers for refund, and they are all in Watsonville: A & S Metals, Watsonville Metals Company, and State Steel Company.

There are other buy-back centers in Castroville, Marina, and down the Salinas Valley to Greenfield.

‘Recycling Mom’ might have better luck with the old school approach and take them back to the store.

The state’s Cal-Recycle website lists 41 stores in Santa Cruz County and 55 retailers in Monterey County – from convenience stores to major food chains -- who refund CRV.

The closure of RePlanet did not affect the city's curbside recycling program.

There is no plan to create a new redemption center in of Santa Cruz

Whether you recycle or not, you’re still paying the recycling fee. The question is, is it worth the time and travel to get your money back.

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