170,000 cans and bot­tles in a week

Dubbo Photo News - - Emergency report - By JOHN RYAN

MATT GOOD­WIN spends his work­ing week tip­ping bot­tles and cans into the sort­ing ma­chines at Vin­nies Dubbo Re­turn and Earn and as the site man­ager he also looks af­ter the pa­per­work.

In its first six days of op­er­a­tion, nearly 171,000 cans and bot­tles from 370-odd cus­tomers have been pro­cessed at a daily av­er­age of about 28,500 items, with the big­gest day so far see­ing more than 40,000 items go through the ma­chines.

“Our cus­tomers are very pos­i­tive about this ser­vice, the way you can ar­rive at the site, get right to it and see the process, and the big point we’ve got is the clean­li­ness and the hy­giene around the place,” Mr Good­win told

“Peo­ple are really im­pressed that they can come in here, it’s all clean and they’re not ex­posed to spillage which they would be if they were pick­ing up their own cans and load­ing them into a ma­chine.

“I don’t think peo­ple re­alise how much is re­cy­cled through the process. We have busi­ness­peo­ple bring­ing stuff in and some have ex­pressly said that what they get in re­funds is what they’re putting back into sport­ing clubs as do­na­tions and spon­sor­ship.

“We have peo­ple who just get up in the morn­ing and walk around town, whether it be Dubbo or Gil­gan­dra or Nar­romine, and on their daily walk they pick up bot­tles and cans. They’re pro­vid­ing a ser­vice to their com­mu­nity.

“We’ve got other peo­ple who are walk­ing the high­ways, pick­ing up bot­tles and cans, and bring in hun­dreds – and at times thou­sands – of items which is a ben­e­fit to the com­mu­nity in clean­li­ness.

“It’s giv­ing peo­ple who are some­what dis­ad­van­taged or not fi­nan­cially se­cure an­other means to sup­port their fam­i­lies,” he ex­plained.

El­iz­a­beth Parkes was drop­ping off about half a dozen wheelie bins full of re­cy­clables when Dubbo Photo News was on site, and all for a good cause.

“We col­lect cans for the grand­kids and put the money in their school bank­ing ac­counts. This Re­turn & Earn has been really good, we can just bring (our re­cy­cling) down here and they do the sort­ing for us,” Mrs Parkes said.

“The grand­kids want to get the money out but we’ve told them not un­til they’re 18 – it’s teach­ing them how to save and to value re­cy­cling and hav­ing a tidy town at the same time. When they come up home it’s al­ways, ‘Nan, how much have we got in our ac­counts now?’”

Daniel Ben­son works at the new fa­cil­ity, which only opened at the be­gin­ning of last week, and is flat out work­ing the ma­chines.

“Mate, it’s un­real. The com­mu­nity loves it and it’s so quick, it’s so easy, you’re paid on the spot straight away, peo­ple can just hang back and let us do all the work, you don’t have to feed it your­self, you don’t have to wait around for the crowd in front of you, you’re in, out, paid, all in 10 min­utes – and it gives the likes of us three full time jobs as well,” Mr Ben­son said.

“We know the gov­ern­ment’s try­ing to cut waste by 40 per cent and you see peo­ple walk­ing the roads now look­ing for cans and bot­tles. It’s mak­ing a mas­sive dif­fer­ence – that 40 per cent’s go­ing to be knocked over real soon.”

Cur­tis Eb­sworth said he just en­joys get­ting out of bed ev­ery day to go to work.

“I love work­ing here, the cus­tomers love com­ing here, it’s quick and easy and their money gets re­turned to them in their bank ac­count and they’re all good with it,” he said.


Matt Good­win work­ing with the sort­ing ma­chines at the new Vin­nies Dubbo Re­turn and Earn.

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