Beverage Container Recycling in Nova Scotia

Where it Goes

All beverage containers (excluding milk) can be returned to an Enviro-Depot™ for refund. Click here for a list of Enviro-Depots near you.

At almost 83%, Nova Scotia has one of the best beverage container return rates in Canada. And only 3% of our beverage containers are shipped overseas. Click here to find out what happens to beverage containers returned to Enviro-Depots.

How it Works

The Beverage Container Deposit-Refund Program was established in 1996 as part of Nova Scotia’s Solid Waste Resource Management Regulations. Bottle recycling in Nova Scotia is fully managed by Divert NS including administration, collection, transportation, and marketing.

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By facilitating bottle return in Nova Scotia, we can help divert beverage containers from our landfill facilities. This is just one example of how we’re always working to find innovative solutions to preserve our environment and reduce waste.

When purchasing a regulated beverage in Nova Scotia, you pay a deposit. You can return these containers to an Enviro-Depot™ for a refund in the following amounts:

Container Type

Deposit Paid


Non-alcohol less than 5L


Alcohol 500ml or less


Alcohol greater than 500ml



* Divert NS is not responsible for administering the domestic beer bottle deposit program. Deposits are provided by the Brewers Association. Under their program, the deposit for refillable domestic beer bottles is fully refundable ($1.20/dozen).

Register as a Beverage Distributor

Under Nova Scotia Solid Waste-Resource Management Regulations, all beverage distributors (regardless of location) are required to register with Divert NS before selling beverages in Nova Scotia. To register with Divert NS please please call 902-895-7732 or email

Questions? View our FAQ for Beverage Distributors.

Refundable Beverage Containers

What’s included:

Gable Top Beverage Containers


Health, energy & diet drinks

Tetra Pak Beverage Cartons


Health, energy & diet drinks

Glass Beverage Containers


Health, energy & diet drinks

Pop/soft drinks


Alcohol & imported beer

Plastic Beverage Containers


Health, energy & diet drinks

Pop/soft drinks



Mini sip bags

Steel Beverage Cans


Health, energy & diet drinks

Aluminum Beverage Cans


Health, energy & diet drinks

Pop/soft drinks


Refillable Beer Bottles*

Brown, green & clear domestic bottles

What’s not included:

Fluid milk and milk products

As defined under the Nova Scotia Dairy Industry Act: any non-reconstituted product that identifies animal milk as the first or only ingredient, including whole, partly skimmed or skimmed milk; whole or partly skimmed chocolate or flavoured milk; light cream; blend; coffee cream; whipping cream; eggnog; buttermilk; concentrated milk; and include yogurt drinks, Weider Pure Pro Shake and milk shakes

Soya beverage products

A product that identifies soybeans as the primary or secondary ingredient, including Natural Balanced, Natura Soy, So Good, Silk Soya, Eden Soya, Vitasoy, Soy Dream, So Nice Soya and Earthshake Soya

Rice beverage products

Including: Pacific Rice, Rice Dream, Ricesense, Eden Blend Rice & Soy, Natura Rice, PC Organic Rice, Ryza Whole Brown Rice and Organic YU Basmati Rice

Meal replacement beverages

Including: Boost, Ensure, Equate, Life Replenish, President's Choice Nutri-Total, President's Choice Ultra Shake, Pharmasave Brand, Kirkland Signature Complete Nutrition Shake, Rexall, Truly Health, Truly Health Nutritional Shake, and WellQuest

Formulated liquid diets

Including Pediasure, Pediasure Plus, Enfagrow, Glucerna Shake, Resource Standard, Resource Plus, Resource 2.0, Resource Diabetic, Resource Thickened Products and Resource Kids Essentials

Foods for very low energy diets

Which are available by prescription through hospitals and pharmacies

All baby formulas

All concentrates

Any product that requires one or more additives to transform it into a ready-to-serve drink

Wine making kits

All non-alcoholic beverages in containers 5-litres or greater

All “Return for Refund” labeled containers purchased outside of Nova Scotia

Still not finding what you’re looking for? Find out what programs are offered in your municipality.

Curious about composting? We have everything you need to know to get started.

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Click the link below to see your local sorting guidelines.

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