New ‘Containers for Change’ depot opens on the Gold Coast

A NEW $3 million state-of-the-art container recycling depot has opened its doors in Southport.

The new depot – Southport Bottle & Cans – has five automated refund terminals, two manual service counters and space for safe traffic flow for up to 30 vehicles.

More than 200 million bottles and cans have been returned in Queensland since the launch of the Containers for Change scheme. Of those, it’s estimated about six million were recycled on the Gold Coast.


The new Southport depot was purpose-built by industry veteran, Damien Woolford, who runs the nearby Stapylton site and has been in the industry for 15 years.

Mr Woolford said he’s invested heavily in the new site.

“We have five ‘ARTs’ which use shape recognition technology to scan each container and check whether it’s eligible for a refund under the scheme,” he said.

“There are also a couple of manual service counters, so people with crushed containers or those which won’t go through the automated refund terminals can be hand counted.

“It’s been a big investment, and we’re very strongly committed to delivering effective container refund services to the Gold Coast through the Container Refund Scheme.”

The new depot’s automatic refund terminals were developed by CDSA in conjuction with Australian company, Sage Automation.

SAGE CEO Adrian Fahey said the ARTs were developed to address challenges experienced by the recycling depot industry operating container refund points.

“The ART automatically sorts, identifies and counts container types for recycling depots,” Mr Fahey said.

“It has five skids with 26 conveyors and a central vision system camera which identifies each item and sorts them using a smart algorithm.”

The new depot is located at the former RACQ site at 239 Southport Nerang Road, Southport.

Minister for Environment and the Great Barrier Reef Leeanne Enoch said it was encouraging to see the container refund scheme growing on the Gold Coast.

“It is great that Gold Coast residents are being enthusiastic about the scheme, and it is also wonderful to see businesses take up the opportunity to be involved,” Ms Enoch said.

“It is great to see so many people embracing this recycling initiative and taking advantage of the 10-cent refund.”

For more information on Containers for Change, click here.