We’ve written before about the beverage industry’s longstanding commitment to environmental stewardship, our dedication to reducing our energy use and our use of 100 percent recyclable packaging for our products. And, through innovation, they are always improving – such as employing entire fleets of hybrid trucks.

As environmental leaders, our industry appreciates seeing communities across the country increase their recycling rates and decrease waste, too. Today, we thought we’d share a piece about communities in Massachusetts that are increasing their recycling rates by incentivizing residents to divert recyclable materials from the trash can into the recycling bin. Chris Flynn, the president of Massachusetts Food Association and a member of Real Recycling for Massachusetts, writes:

“‘[P]ay as you throw’ programs, which charge residents for trash collection and disposal in proportion to how much they throw away —[is] an approach that has been shown to be the single most effective policy for keeping trash out of landfills. The proposal would also help facilitate effective practices such as single stream recycling, same day pick-up for trash and recycling, and educational programs.”

He continues:

“By concentrating recycling efforts on a single, comprehensive system, the proposed legislation allows us to replace Massachusetts’ costly and inefficient bottle bill. The bottle bill, which charges a five cent tax for beer and soda products, was implemented 30 years ago to reduce litter. More convenient and efficient municipal recycling programs now exist in communities across Massachusetts, and we must direct our energy and resources into these. Making such programs work better and smarter means we no longer need the hassles and expense of bottle and can redemption.”

Read the full op-ed here.