Bottle Refunds


General Discussion Forgotten Chicago Forum
Explore Forgotten Chicago
Feel free to discuss anything related to the website here. 
Goto Topic: PreviousNext
Goto: ForumsMessagesNewSearchLog InPrint View
Bottle Refunds
Posted by: Kchi (---.dsl.chcgil.sbcglobal.net)
Date: December 05, 2012 09:17AM

Does anybody remember what year bottlers stopped refilling glass bottles. As a kid in the 60s, one of our main sources of spending money was that we were allowed to return the bottles to the market. We thought it was great, but I remember the manager at the local National or the corner grocery store would be annoyed when we would bring in a shopping cart full of bottles. As a Pepsi family, I remember we would get 2 cents for a Pepsi bottle and a 5 cents for a Quart bottle from flavored soda.

I don't know whether paying for the bottles was a law or just something bottlers did to get their bottles back.

The only bottling plant I remember seeing was a Coke plant at the corner of Fullerton and Narragansett. We used to see it when we went to Riis Park or the Community in the shopping center.

I was reminded of this recently when I bought Pepsi in the city, and was surprised that somewhere along the line, Chicago is charging an additional 3% sales tax on
soda in addition to the 9.5% sales tax. So at one time I was getting a refund on my purchase and now I am paying 12.5% sales tax. Luckily I am within a mile of the suburbs, so just as I do with gas and bottled water, I will make my purchases outside the city and preferably Cook County ,to avoid the "hidden" nickel and diming that the politicians do. I am not crazy enough to go out of my way to save a few cents, I just try to do all my purchases as I go about my daily businness.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/05/2012 09:53AM by Kchi.

Options: ReplyQuote

AD:

Re: Bottle Refunds
Posted by: PKDickman (---.lightspeed.cicril.sbcglobal.net)
Date: December 05, 2012 10:56AM

Cases of Huber beer in returnable quarts, those were the days.

I don't think there was any specific date. The bottlers just stopped as their bottle supply ran out, or their distribution area got to big to be able to get them back.

According to this article:

End of the line for returnable Coca-Cola bottle

the last returnable 6.5 oz Cokes came off the line this Oct. in Winona.

Options: ReplyQuote

AD:

Re: Bottle Refunds
Posted by: SJMR (---.dsl.emhril.sbcglobal.net)
Date: December 26, 2012 12:50PM

I don't know when they stopped reusing the bottles,but Kchi is so right. My sister would head to our local park early Saturday and Sunday mornings to collect all the beer bottles the teens had left from their night of drinking. They were bigger than the 12oz bottles and she got 5 cents a piece for them. I followed along at a distance to make sure all was well, but if you needed money, she was the one to see.

Options: ReplyQuote

AD:

Re: Bottle Refunds
Posted by: Erie St Danek (---.hsd1.wa.comcast.net)
Date: January 03, 2013 09:34AM

I lived right behind Talcott School on Erie Street in the late 50's .... I remember a lady that looked like Olive Oyl that walked the neighborhood looking for empty bottles with two shopping bags in each hand. Always her bags were full. We called her Grandma Bottles. When we called her Grandma Bottles she would set the bags down on the ground and pick up her dress and moon us .... she didn't wear any panties .... and she laughed like hell when she did this and so did we ..... ! We had so much darn fun with her and so did she ....

Options: ReplyQuote

AD:

Re: Bottle Refunds
Posted by: rjmachon (---.hsd1.il.comcast.net)
Date: January 03, 2013 03:01PM

Michigan still have bottle refunds? It is like 10 cents per bottle, can, and plastic bottle and when you return them, you get your refund. This is suppose to keep recyclables out of the trash.

Options: ReplyQuote

AD:

Re: Bottle Refunds
Posted by: Cragin Spring (---.dhcp.ftbg.wi.charter.com)
Date: November 03, 2014 07:59PM

Mid 1990's is when returnable bottles faded away in grocery stores. Pepsi, Coke, Royal Crown and Canfields were very big on selling 16 ounce returnable bottles in ma & pa stores and chains such as Jewel & Dominick's. Aluminum cans and plastic bottles took over the market. Many soda drivers on Monday would come back to the plant with their truck filled with empty bottles.10 ounce bottles were common for soda machines at gas stations, factories and school cafeterias. But the 10 ounce returnable was phased out around the mid 1980's.
Inside the plant was a bottle sorter that would work 2nd shift and sort the bottles according to their labels. Coke did have a bottling plant on Grand & Narragansett that closed quite a few years ago. Royal Crown bottling plant on 47th Street closed also. Royal Crown in Chicago also bottled Nehi flavors which were in returnable bottles. Canfield's was located on 89th place which closed also. Pepsi had a bottling plant at 1745 North Kolmar Ave. which later became a warehouse and that plant stopped bottling. Bottling moved for Pepsi to 51st & Union. The Kolmar Pepsi Warehouse closed completely around 1996 and they moved to 35th Street east of Ashland.

Options: ReplyQuote

AD:

Re: Bottle Refunds
Posted by: davey7 (---.dsl.chcgil.ameritech.net)
Date: November 05, 2014 02:16PM

I don't remember there ever being bottle refunds in Chicago, but that could have just been our neighborhood.

Options: ReplyQuote

AD:

Re: Bottle Refunds
Posted by: ambrosemario (---.hsd1.in.comcast.net)
Date: November 05, 2014 03:11PM

Up until some point in the late 70's or early to mid 80's, most soda and beer bottle purchases required a 2-cent or 5-cent (quart bottles) deposit. This was to encourage their return so they could be washed and reused by the bottler. It was common practice for kids in our neighborhood to scrounge for a few empty pop bottles, which you would return to the corner store and redeem for some penny candy. Hard to imagine today, but back in the 50's and 60's you could make out pretty well with 10 or 15 cents. The more recent bottle deposits you see in some states, Michigan being the closest to Chicago, are state laws. The purpose is to discourage littering, because once bottlers switched to aluminum cans, plastic and disposable glass, their need to reuse then ended. Hence, a great deal of littering.

Options: ReplyQuote

AD:

Re: Bottle Refunds
Posted by: rjmachon (---.hsd1.il.comcast.net)
Date: November 05, 2014 03:59PM

I can remember collecting bottles for refunds in the mid 1960's. You could buy a 16oz. RC and a package of Suzie Q's for 27 cents. It was hard to return the Old Dutch soda pop bottles because not many stores sold it. I can remember also collecting Hi-C bottles as well.

Options: ReplyQuote

AD:

Re: Bottle Refunds
Posted by: Cragin Spring (---.dhcp.ftbg.wi.charter.com)
Date: November 05, 2014 08:56PM

I forgot to mention Hi Q. They had many flavors and were bottled by Pepsi. They were 10 ounce returnable bottles and discontinued around 1985.

Options: ReplyQuote

AD:

Re: Bottle Refunds
Posted by: daveg (130.36.62.---)
Date: November 06, 2014 03:59PM

Growing up, bottle refunds got us our, to name a few:

baseball cards
rubber balls for fast pitchin'
comics

Options: ReplyQuote

AD:



Goto: ForumsMessagesSearchLog In
Sorry, only registered users may post in this forum.

Online Users

Guests: 17
Record Number of Users: 3 on September 02, 2014
Record Number of Guests: 89 on October 31, 2014

Home | Columns | Articles | Features | Links | Forum | Mission Statement | Staff | Media & Press | Maps | FAQ | Contact