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Recycle the Empties, or No Beer For You!

In Germany, preserving the environment is just as important as drinking beer. So please, bring your bottles back to the brewery where you received them! In Germany there are about 4 billion beer bottles in circulation that usually get filled up about 30 times in their lifespan thanks to recycling! When patrons go to the local convenience store or brewery, they pay a small deposit on each bottle that they purchase. When the bottles are brought back to the store, they get their deposit back! The problem is, with the heightened consumption of beer, and lack of empties being brought back, Germany is running out of beer bottles!


In Germany, there is a brewery in every village, of every city all with different branding. Years ago, different breweries would all use the same bottles, but change the label. Nowadays since there is such high competition in this industry, breweries need to stand out. Not only are the labels different, but bottles and crates are now unique to different breweries. They cannot share. This means that bottles need to be returned even faster than before – especially with a spike in consumption.

Canned Beer

Recyclable cans make up only 7% of Germany’s beer market, which is completely dominated by glass bottles. So why not start canning more beer? Frowned upon. The Germans believe that cans are not the answer to a friendly environment, and also, they do not prefer drinking beer from a can. But, Thomas Tyrell, master brewer at Stone Brewery says cans are environment friendly! Cans also carry a deposit and 98% of cans get recycled!

Although the 7-cent deposit may not entice you to bring back your bottles, it’s for the good of the beer industry and community! Do a good deed and bring back your empties!