Victorian Container Deposit Scheme (CDS Vic)

Recycle eligible drink containers for a 10 cent refund through the Victorian Container Deposit Scheme.

CDS Vic is a new Victorian Government initiative that transforms eligible drink containers into high-quality recycled products. It aims to reduce litter while creating new economic opportunities. The scheme handles various container types, including items that aren’t currently accepted in our kerbside recycling.

Depending on the refund point, you can choose whether to receive your refund as cash, a retail voucher or as an electronic refund. You can also donate your refund to a charity or community organisation registered with the scheme.

Eligible containers

Most 150 ml to 3L beverage containers that are made from glass, plastic, aluminium, steel or liquid paperboard are eligible. If a container has a ‘10c’ mark, then it should be returnable.

Follow these tips to obtain your refund:

  • Don’t crush your containers – most refund points can't accept them if they have been crushed.
  • Lids can be left on – they will become part of the circular economy and will be made into new products.
  • Make sure containers are empty, but they don’t need to be washed.
  • Leave the label on.

Ineligible containers

CDS Vic focuses on beverage containers that are common litter items. It doesn’t include wine or spirit bottles – or larger items that are usually found in the home. As the scheme evolves this may change.

Therefore, the below items aren’t accepted for return:

  • Plain and alternative milk containers of all sizes (bottles and cartons)
  • Flavoured milk containers of 1L or more
  • Glass wine and spirit bottles
  • Cordial bottles
  • Juice containers 1L and over
  • Household food containers (for example, tuna cans).

All of the above items with the exception of plain milk cartons can be disposed of as normal – via mixed recycling bins. In the case of glass and spirit bottles, these can also be disposed of via our communal glass hubs.

Return points

There are three different ways residents can return eligible containers across the state – via reverse vending machines, depots and over-the-counter sites.

There are currently three return points in our City:

  1. A Reverse-Vending-Machine located at 477 Plummer Street, Port Melbourne, VIC 3207
  2. A Reverse-Vending-Machine located at Melbourne Sports Centre (MSAC), 30 Aughtie Drive, Albert Park, VIC 3206
  3. A depot located at 30 Thistlethwaite Street, South Melbourne, VIC 3205

Return-It, our zone operator is working to establish further locations for return points throughout the municipality. All refund points in Victoria are visible through the CDS website and additional points will be added by Return-It between now and August 2024.  

Electronic refunds are managed via the CDS Vic East App. Residents can use the app to configure their preferred payment method, including bank transfer, PayPal, or donation.

Fundraising through the scheme

CDS Vic gives charities and community groups a new way to raise funds while helping the environment. They can:

  • receive donations directly from the community as a ‘Donation Partner’  
  • run a refund collection point themselves
  • host a container collection drive. 

Please visit the CDS Vic webpage for fundraising for more information.   

More information

For more information on the Victorian Container Deposit Scheme, including refund points, see the CDS Vic website.

For more information on what can and can’t go in our kerbside or public place mixed recycling, see our Guide to recycling bins and services.