Return and Earn Set to Expand

Return and Earners in the region could be in for a massive update, with the NSW Government planning to expand the scheme so it includes containers like glass wine and spirits bottles and larger containers.

Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke said this is an exciting opportunity to build on one of Australia’s most successful recycling initiatives and improve recycling practices in households across NSW.

“More than 8 billion bottles have been returned and given a new life since the scheme started in 2017, a huge achievement and I thank the regional communities for embracing this new way of thinking about beverage containers,” Ms Cooke said.

“Together we have driven down drink container litter rates by an impressive 52 per cent, increased recycling rates and donated funds to charities,”

“Return and Earn has achieved an enormous amount so far and now we’re looking to take the next step as we strive towards our vision for a circular economy in the region.”  

Return and Earn locations across the Cootamundra Electorate are located at:

Bland LGAV & L Machinery Railway Road, West Wyalong  Over the counter
Coolamon LGACoolamon Lions Club 59 Loughan Street, Coolamon  Over the counter
Cootamundra-Gundagai LGAGundagai Mitre 10, 1 Byron Street, Gundagai   Woolworths Cootamundra, 26 Bourke St, Cootamundra  Over the counter     Reverse vending machine
Cowra LGAWoolworths Cowra, 3-9 Railway Lane, Cowra  Reverse vending machine
Hilltops LGADonges Supa IGA, 159 Boorowa Street, Young  Reverse vending machine
Junee LGAJunee Supa IGA, 102 Broadway Street, Junee  Over the counter
Narrandera LGANarrandera Recycling 16 Red Hill Road Narrandera  Reverse vending machine
Temora LGAIGA Temora, Victoria Street 7 Baker Street Temora  Reverse vending machine
Weddin LGAGrenfell Furniture, 66 Main Street, Grenfell  Over the counter

Consultation is now open on the Scheme’s expansion, which would see almost all beverage containers between 150 ml and 3 litres accepted for refund.

For example, this would include:

  • Wine and spirits in glass bottles
  • Cordials and juice concentrate
  • Larger containers up to 3 litres of beverages already in the scheme, such as flavoured milk, fruit and vegetable juice, cask wine and sachets. 

Plain milk and health tonics would continue to be excluded from the scheme.

The NSW Environment Protection Authority will be holding targeted stakeholder information sessions and webinars in the coming months around NSW so a transition can be as smooth as possible for new suppliers to the scheme.

The discussion paper Driving NSW’s circular economy is available at and will be open for consultation until 5pm 2 December 2022.

For more information about Return and Earn visit

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