Encorp Atlantic – A Leader in Recycling and Industry StewardshipLogo_encorp_re

Re-Centre is an innovative recycling research pilot project initiated and led by Encorp Atlantic Inc.

Encorp’s local redemption centre partner for the Re-Centre pilot project, Valley Redemption Centre, takes care of the daily operations for the three Re-Centre depots. Encorp monitors the recycling data, researches and makes improvements to the Re-Centre model, and manages marketing/communications, member services, and member accounts.

Encorp represents more than 85 non-alcoholic beverage product distributors and is responsible for processing and recycling all non-alcoholic deposit-bearing beverage containers received by redemption centres in the province.  To this day, almost 30 years later since the start of the New Brunswick Beverage Containers Program, Encorp has recycled 4 billion containers and contributed over $145 million to the New Brunswick Environmental Trust Fund.

Encorp is proud to be a leader in recycling and industry stewardship. Encorp has been able to deliver consistent financial returns to New Brunswick’s Environmental Trust Fund and divert valuable materials from the waste stream while being the lowest-cost-per-unit managed beverage container program (Canadian Recycling Affiliates) in Canada.

Re-Centre – The Future for Redeeming Used Beverage Containers

Since 2014, Encorp Atlantic’s innovative recycling pilot projects, which are part of the “(re)” (i.e. “research”) initiative, have been exploring and testing new methods of redeeming used beverage containers. Goals include improving recycling rates in New Brunswick and consumer convenience, as well as increasing redemption centre productivity levels.

Phase 1 – Initial Launch

Launched on Earth Day 2014, phase 1 of the Re-Centre pilot project consisted of two automated bag drop beverage container depots. A test group of 2,500 members of the public got to sign up to use these depots for their recycling needs, collecting their empty beverage containers in bags and dropping them off whenever they pleased.

Over the three-year initial phase, the Re-Centre depots in the Greater Moncton region were able to serve customers with at least three bags (150 containers) in 30 seconds or less over 95% of the time. The Re-Centre model proved that customers prefer better hours of operation for redemption centres (50% of Re-Centre visits occurred when neighbouring redemption centres were closed). Furthermore, the improvements that the Re-Centre model offers convinced consumers who do not regularly redeem their used beverage containers to start recycling again. This represents a whole new volume for redemption centres. Participant feedback was also very positive, showing a clear need for faster, more efficient ways to recycle and redeem used beverage containers.

Phase 2 – Technology Transfer to Local Redemption Centre

On October 1, 2017, the Re-Centre pilot project entered Phase 2. Encorp started collaborating with a local redemption centre, Valley Redemption Centre, to see how well the Re-Centre model could perform in a real-time redemption centre environment, collect missing data and fine-tune some of its components.  Valley Redemption Centre now takes care of the daily operations for the Re-Centre depots. Encorp monitors the recycling data, researches and makes improvements to the Re-Centre model, and manages marketing/communications, member services, and member accounts.

Phase 3 – Improvements to Automated Bag Drop Depot Model and Recommendations for Provincial Redemption Centre Network

From June 2018-June 2020, Encorp led a similar pilot project to Re-Centre, which was called Re-Express. Re-Express allowed Encorp to test the concept of an automated bag drop depot with fixed-value bags and retail connectivity.  The Re-Express depot was set up in the Sobeys Vaughan Harvey store parking lot thanks to a partnership with this retailer.  The Re-Express pilot project also helped Encorp launch and test an in-store cash out option—the Re-Station—for customers to access their refund.

In June 2020, Encorp merged best practices from its Re-Express and Re-Centre pilot projects under the current revised Re-Centre model. The former Re-Express depot located at 55 Vaughan Harvey Boulevard in Moncton was converted into a Re-Centre depot and the membership for Re-Centre was broadened to include all registered Re-Express participants.

Re-Centre continues to operate with its now three locations in Greater Moncton. The continuing success of the Re-Centre pilot project has allowed Encorp to test new technology and be in the position to now offer such technology and make recommendations to New Brunswick redemption centres.