Canadian cannabis store launches packaging buyback program

MJ Biz Daily reports

An independently owned cannabis store in St. Catharines, Ontario, believes it has found a partial solution to the growing amount of trash created in the booming new industry.

The Niagara Herbalist has started paying customers for their empty cannabis packages with store credits, styled after similar programs offering cash for empty alcohol containers.

One of the goals is to divert waste that would have ended up in landfills.

The store is offering customers a store credit of 10 Canadian cents (8 U.S. cents) for glass jars or bottles and CA$0.05 for plastic jars and other recyclable outer-packaging, including cardboard containers and plastic pre-roll or vaporizer containers.

Used vape cartridges and vape batteries are not part of this program, which launched Nov. 15.

While recycling programs aren’t new – Canopy Growth and TerraCycle launched a nationwide program in 2019 – this is believed to be the first time in Canada a cannabis store is offering financial compensation for empty packaging.

“Cannabis packaging is a problem. Right from Day One, there’s been so much of it,” Niagara Herbalist co-owner Kevin Trethowan told MJBizDaily in a phone interview.

He said the buyback program is a year-and-a-half in the making, and Niagara College’s Environmental Management and Assessment program helped get it going.

The program also accepts plastics that cannot be recycled


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