Industry Projects

As the regulator for a leading-edge beverage container recycling system, the BCMB is continually striving to enhance system efficiencies and develop or implement innovative equipment and processes that will ensure the system thrives and remains one of the most successful in Canada.

As outlined in our 2016-2018 Business Plan, the BCMB is engaged in, or will be engaging in, several projects over the next few years to achieve our goals and objectives. If you would like more information on any of the projects listed below, please contact us.

Industry Branding

In collaboration with industry stakeholders, the BCMB will undertake to review all current depot signage and branding. The BCMB is committed to helping to brand depots and industry events with the industry logo Depot It’s Worth It. The BCMB’s goal is to create further awareness of the depot network (increase brand recognition), the value of returning beverage containers for a refund, the success of the current system and the environmental benefits of recycling. 

End Use Recycling

Under the Beverage Container Recycling Regulation the BCMB is required to approve the methods by which the CSA recycle beverage containers. To this end, the BCMB will undertake a two year project to understand, evaluate and report on current industry methods for recycling beverage containers and develop best practices and recycling standards going forward. The Board of Directors will be asked to review and approve the methods of recycling and the approved methods will be captured in the Registration By-law and the CSA Operating Agreement.

Waste Audits

The BCMB will partner with the City of Edmonton and Calgary to perform landfill and Material Recovery Facility waste audits to better determine the impact of beverage container waste on the environment. The data will be analyzed to understand where the waste is being generated and to identify key areas of opportunity to improve the beverage container return rate.

Industry IT Integration

The BCMB values innovation pertaining to the advancement of efforts to increase efficiency and effectiveness in the system. The development of an integrated electronic communication system between the Collection System Agent and individual depots will provide the industry with the opportunity to improve procedural controls related to accuracy in shipping, payments and inventory. The project is being designed in phases to occur over the course of two years, beginning with request for proposals for design plans and ending with Phase I of implementation.

Quick Drop Technology

Promising technologies can enhance consumer convenience, improve container return rates and reduce costs. The BCMB, with collaboration of stakeholder groups, will pilot alternative collection method sites using a quick drop service approach. Ideally quick drop sites would be located in high density, accessible locations to the public or in remote communities where a fully permitted depot operation is not viable. These sites would require significantly less space or square footage, reducing the industry's footprint where possible. The goal of the pilot is to provide a highly accessible, quality and safe service to the public while expanding the depot operators’ business and connection to the community.

Enhancing BCMB’s Information Systems

The BCMB will continue to implement, evaluate and improve new tools such as the case management system and online registration database. Areas of evaluation will include amalgamation with other applications/software currently used to allow the sharing of data and the development of additional applications such as electronic mapping of depots and population growth.

Handling Commission Review 2017

In April 2016, the BCMB will begin the next Handling Commission Review process. The process occurs every three years to determine the handling fees paid to depots by the CSA and CSP(s) to collect and sort beverage containers. The process involves interested parties (Depot network, CSA, CSP) and is generally scheduled over the course of a one year period. The BCMB Board of Directors approve the negotiated handling commissions of which will be reflected in the Administrative By-law. Completion of the process is anticipated for April 2017.  

Registration By-Law Implementation

Over the course of the last two years, a BCMB Committee has been working towards the development of a Beverage Container Registration By-law.  The By-law outlines the registration process for new beverage containers entering the Alberta market. All beverage containers to be sold in Alberta must be able to be recycled in a manner that is satisfactory to the BCMB.  Consideration for approval is placed on the following: method of recycling proposed; contamination to current streams and visibility of container within the sorting process at depots; percentage by weight of the container material that is recoverable/recyclable; cost of recycling the container or disassembly of the container if needed; and marketability of the container materials. The BCMB anticipates that the new By-law will be considered by the BCMB Board of Directors by early 2016.

Improve Container Registration Process – AGLC Registration Database Integration

To complement the new registration database and Beverage Container Registration By-law, the BCMB is working with the Alberta Gaming and Liquor Commission to integrate the registration database with their beverage container database to simplify the registration process and administrative work to register a new product. 

Management Systems

The BCMB Board of Directors and Senior Management have adopted a management system framework. The scope of this project includes the implementation of the framework, identification of key elements, gap analysis, closure plans and execution, development of scorecard templates and implementation at the Board level. 

Mystery Shopper Program Evaluation

In 2015, the BCMB developed and implemented a new Mystery Shopper Program. The Program is designed to “mystery shop” or audit depot refund accuracy.  The information obtained from the audits are used as key performance indicators for depot performance and also as one of the evaluation factors within depot permit renewals. The program was redesigned to use a professional online service provider with access to auditors across the province. The change moved the program away from volunteer and student groups and has significantly increased the validity of the program by ensuring accuracy, timeliness and mystery of audits. The new program is also significantly lower in cost and provides high levels of reporting functions. The scope of the project is a one year plan to monitor and evaluate the new program and to draft a Mystery Shopper Policy.

CSA & CSP Performance Standards Development

In February 2015, the BCMB Board of Directors approved the Collection System Agent (CSA) By-law. The By-law defines the relationship between the BCMB and the CSA. As a schedule to the By-law, the CSA Operating Agreement further considers the reporting, operational and performance requirements for the CSA. Over the course of 2016 and 2017, we will work collaboratively with the CSA to collect data and information that can begin to define performance standards for the CSA.

In addition, the BCMB will begin to work in collaboration with Brewers Distributor Ltd. on developing a CSP By-law. Similar to the CSA By-law, this By-law will also define the relationship between the BCMB and CSPs.

Handling Commission Rate Setting Models/Evaluation of Performance Based Regulation

In an effort to continuously improve, the BCMB will review the current rate setting model for handling commissions and to consider Performance Based Regulation or any other models that may add benefit or value to setting of handling commissions. In 2016, the BCMB will undertake a review of these models and identify potential improvements to the current system. 

BCMB Performance Standards and Sustainability Reporting

The BCMB values transparency and accountability and believes that incorporating additional levels of sustainability reporting into the BCMB Business Plan and Annual Report will provide the public, government and stakeholders with a view of the Alberta beverage container system’s impact on environmental, social and economic factors. The project scope has been designed over a three-year period to allow for cautious and meaningful implementation of additional performance standards and metrics.