Orange Return and Earn celebrates grand opening

Orange return and earn

The Orange community celebrated the official opening of the new Orange Return and Earn automated depot this week.

Operated by local not-for-profit Wangarang Industries, an Australian disability enterprise, the large-format facility has a strong regional community focus and is completely accessible, meeting the needs of people of all abilities.

Local businesses supported the depot’s construction including contributions towards the cost of lifting equipment, providing sorting tables and landscaping services.

All aspects of the depot’s operations have been designed to ensure ease and access for staff and customers of all abilities, from on-site parking to bin lifts.

The depot has quickly proven popular since starting operations in March with Orange locals returning almost 800,000 bottles, cans and cartons in the first three weeks.

Wangarang Industries has also quickly established connections with local groups including Orange Ex-Service Club which donates the refunds from all containers it collects to Wangarang; Blayney Hospital and Wyangla Dam Bushfire Brigade also now recycle eligible drink containers through the depot with the refunds from these containers supporting their own operations.

James Dorney, Chief Executive Officer of network operator TOMRA Cleanaway, said Return and Earn’s automated depots are an important part of the return point network, and enable not-for-profits such as Wangarang to put more money back into the local community, while helping the environment and providing local jobs.

More than 11 billion drink containers have now been returned for recycling through Return and Earn’s network of more than 620 return points across New South Wales since the scheme launched in 2017.

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