From noon to 1 p.m. on Tuesday, July 30, Droppett, a can and bottle redemption business, will conduct a demonstration of how its system works.
The demonstration will be at the Crossroads Mall at the corner of Highway 39 and Highway 59/141.
According to information posted on the business’s website, Droppett was founded in January 2018 as an alternative to the container redemption process in Iowa.
State Sen. Jason Schultz, of Schleswig, organized the demonstration in Denison, Harlan and Ida Grove.
The demonstration in Harlan will be at 10 a.m. at the Shelby County Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and the demonstration in Ida Grove will begin at 2 p.m. in the Shopko parking lot.
Schultz said a lobbyist that represents a number of issues wanted to know if he would be interested in seeing the Droppett system because he had introduced a bill to inject more money into the can redemption system.
“Folks are looking for efficiencies in the current system and instead of changing it, they wanted to bring an example of the trailer around the state,” Schultz said. “I said it is more important that the constituents look at it, and they agreed.”
While on the phone in the Bomgaars parking lot, Schultz set the three-stop tour for July 30 in Senate District 9.
Schultz said at least someone is trying to provide a solution and wants to see if his constituents would be interested in trying it.
He believes that the trailer will be touring other senate districts in Iowa, and added that he knows the Droppett system is in use in Des Moines.
He said the Droppett system would likely work well with organizations that accept cans as a means of fundraising.
Schultz said he knows it will be easy for naysayers to comment that this isn’t the system they are used to but he added that Droppett offers the opportunity to have can and bottle redemption in more places other than towns like county seats.
Droppet’s website says the bag drop system it has developed allows consumers to register an account online and order customer-specific bag tags to place on a plastic bag of redeemable containers.
The consumer drops their bag or bags off at one of the Droppett containers in the state. From there the bags are picked up and taken to the business’s processing facility. The bottles and cans in the bags are electronically counted and the consumers’ deposit of five cents per acceptable container is placed into their Droppett account.
Consumers can choose to move the funds in their Droppett account to their personal checking account or they can select a Droppett partner charity of their choice to donate to.
The website’s frequently asked questions page said consumers who have an account can go to www.droppett.com and select the login/sign up tab. From there they can see the funds they have available. Any time the balance in the consumer’s account reaches $15 or more, they can make a request to move the funds from their Droppett account into their personal checking account.
They can make a donation to a Droppett partner charity no matter how small their balance is.
Droppett’s headquarters are on East Euclid in Des Moines. Doug Web is the president and CEO of the company.
Can and bottle redemption is perennially a hot issue in the legislature but it has never gained traction.
For the past 40 years, redemption centers have had to operate on the same one cent per container for the 40 years the bottle bill has in operation.
“I know of all the issue I hear about and the other rural legislators hear, it’s in the top three,” Schultz said. “If this is a viable option that the vast majority of people can use, that’s fine. I’m not trying to promote it. We just have to find a channel for these cans and bottles.”
He said there are a number of rural legislators who are of the mind to come up with a bottle bill solution, and Schultz said it is too important and the legislators have to come up with a plan that can be presented to leadership.
“Each year a number of bills are introduced that we know the work was done ahead of session,” he explained. “We want to get to that point with the bottle bill with all the stakeholders so it can go through the legislature.”