Re: [GRRN] Refillables

Bill Sheehan (
Mon, 24 May 1999 01:09:03 -0400

I see huge fluctuations in soda 6- and 12-pack prices week-to-week at local
supermarkets and convenience stores and wonder how one could document price
differentials between states under these circumstances.

A publication by the Container Recycling Institute contains the following
information on the subject of beverage prices and sales in bottle bill
states. The publication, The Ten Cent Incentive to Recycle, can be found at

On Prices:
Shortly after implementation of the Massachusetts bottle bill, Donald J.
Dowd, Vice President of Coca-Cola New England was quoted in the Boston Globe
as saying, “Our prices pre-bottle bill and post-bottle bill are virtually
the same.”

Soft drink prices are among the most price variable food or beverage product
on the market, giving soda companies great liberty to set prices to their
advantage and make deposit laws look 'inflationary'.

The New York Beer Wholesalers acknowledged that over half of the 11-18%
price increase in New York was due to inflation within the industry.

On Sales:
The general pattern of beverage sales in deposit states has been an initial
slight decline followed by a return to normal growth patterns. Sales figures
for a 3-5 year period after the laws were passed show sales increased at or
above the national average in most of the states with deposit laws.

/Bill Sheehan