Monday 15 April 2024 saw a great Return and Earn celebration held at Wetherill Park in the City of Fairfield Council.

The official launch of the Wetherill Park Return and Earn Depot was attended by VIP’s including NSW Parliamentary Member for Prospect Dr Hugh McDermott, who represented the Minister for the Environment, Penny Sharpe MLC, Shirani Glover representing of NSW scheme coordinator Exchange for Change and site owner operator, Harry Gupta and executive from TOMRA Cleanaway, including Michelle Mandl who was the event MC, Vesna Davidovic – NSW GM and David Hill, Finance Director.

 

The TOMRA Cleanaway team joined the Fairfield community this week to celebrate the official opening of the Wetherill Park Return and Earn depot. Commencing as an over-the-counter return point in 2017 and, through consistent, exceptional volume, was identified by the TOMRA Cleanaway team as a strong candidate to deliver a regionally significant bulk drink container return point as an automated depot.

Wetherill Park Return and Earn Depot, operated by Gaurav (Harry) Gupta, opened its doors in November 2023 and has already processed 19 million bottles, cans, and cartons, largely through high volume returns of over 500 containers.

 

 

A local success story

A real local success story, Harry and the Wetherill Park Return and Earn Depot team, have supported the community and local environment with each container processed, returning over $1.9 million to the community in container refunds. NSW Parliamentary Member for Prospect Dr Hugh McDermott acknowledged the dedication and patience of Harry Gupta, “Harry, you are a real Australian success story.” Dr McDermott reflected on the local community in the electorate, describing the success of the Wetherill Park Return and Earn Depot as synonymous with the efforts of business owners in the area.

 

 

Community support for Return and Earn

Container deposit scheme advocates in attendance

The TOMRA Cleanaway team celebrated with guests including the State Member for Prospect, Dr Hugh McDermott MP, as well as representatives of local charities, and Shirani Glover from scheme coordinator Exchange for Change.

Over the counter to automated depot

Gaurav has been a passionate supporter of Return and Earn since the scheme began in 2017. He has operated numerous over-the-counter return points through existing businesses, growing his involvement with the scheme to immense volumes that required an expansion to new premises.

Harry said, “I am incredibly proud to expand to an automated depot in the NSW Return and Earn scheme.  My team and I are excited to collaborate with and assist the local community, particularly partnering with charity organisations and schools to raise funds through this initiative. I encourage everyone to “Collect more & Earn more”.

Strong community connections in Fairfield from Return and Earn

In launching the depot, Harry and the team have continued to build on their strong connections with the community, offering Return and Earn collection services for individuals, charities, sporting groups, schools, and local businesses. His support of the Fairfield community is demonstrated by the generous donations to three charities, totalling $1,500.

Harry and the team selected three local charities, One Heart Blacktown, Inclusive Skating Australia and One Meal Blacktown to receive direct donations to celebrate the opening. The charities will continue to receive the support of Wetherill Park Return and Earn Depot over the coming months with customers encouraged to donate their refunds to the charities while onsite.

Fairfield City residents Return and Earn

Fairfield City Council residents are already enthusiastic recyclers, having returned over 330 million containers for recycling through local Return and Earn points.

The Wetherill Park Return and Earn Depot is one of 19 return points in the City of Fairfield, making it easier than ever for locals to cash in their eligible bottles and cans. The depot accepts any number of containers but is the perfect place to return over 500 container at a time.

Wetherill Park Return and Earn Depot is located at 5 Allen Place, Wetherill Park and is open from 8:00 am to 6:00 pm Monday to Saturdays and 9:00 am to 5:00 pm on Sundays.

For more information on Return and Earn visit: www.returnandearn.org.au.

This article was first published in Waste Management Review.