By Rick Pluta
There's a debate underway in Lansing on whether to extend the 10-cent bottle deposit to alcoholic beverages sold in pouches. The state Treasury said the deposit law applies to drinks in pouches.
A state House bill would preempt applying the new but common drink packaging pouches made of a composite of plastic, aluminum, and paper. The pouches are not recyclable or bio-degradable.
The deposit law was approved by voters 36 years ago and changing requires super-majorities in the House and the Senate. Cyndi Roper is with the environmental group Clean Water Action. She said the law has worked with bottles and cans, and should apply to booze in pouches.
"If we're going to get excited about some kind of a package, it should be that's recyclable, it should be something that can be put back in the material stream instead of something that's going to fill our landfills."
Retailers say they'd be saddled with huge costs. They don't have equipment to process pouches, and since they can't be re-used or recycled, taking them back serves no purpose.
Copyright 2012, MPRN