Recycling Plastic Bags Gets Easier on Vancouver Island

Recycle BC and London Drugs team up to offer return-to-retail of plastic bags, plastic overwrap and foam packaging

April 10, 2017, Victoria, B.C. – Starting today, recycling plastic bags, plastic overwrap and foam packaging on Vancouver Island will be as simple as a trip to London Drugs. Recycle BC (formerly Multi-Material BC) is partnering with London Drugs to offer this convenient option for residents to bring these materials to their local store for recycling. Building off a partnership established with London Drugs stores in the City of Vancouver last summer, this expansion involves nine stores throughout the Island.

The following plastic bags, overwrap and foam packaging are now accepted at London Drugs stores on Vancouver Island:

  • Plastic bags and overwrap, including grocery bags, bread bags, produce bags, outer bags for diapers
  • White and coloured plastic foam packaging, including foam meat trays, foam egg cartons and foam cushion packaging for electronics

“Our expanded partnership with London Drugs will make recycling plastic bags and other materials that aren’t accepted a curbside even easier for Vancouver Island residents,” said Allen Langdon, Managing Director of Recycle BC. “This expansion will build off a recently established initiative in Vancouver, so I’m confident in its success. At the end of the day, both organizations share a common goal of protecting the environment by keeping recyclable materials out of landfills. We’re doing that by making recycling more convenient.”

“London Drugs is proud to partner with Recycle BC to offer a very convenient way for consumers to recycle their plastic and foam packaging,” said Kevin Sorby, General Manager, Retail Operations, London Drugs. “Although we have been recycling packaging for decades, this is the first time London Drugs stores on Vancouver Island will take back all varieties of soft plastic and Styrofoam no matter where the original product packaging has originated from. There is no reason for island residents who live nearby our stores to throw any soft plastics or foam in the waste bin. Simply bring it in and we’ll ensure it’s recycled.”

Recycling helps to conserve resources, save energy and protect the environment. Plastic bags and overwrap are recycled into new grocery bags, plastic pallets, containers, crates, pipes, decking and park benches. Plastic foam packaging is recycled into picture frames, construction trim, moulding, park benches and fence posts.

In addition to London Drugs locations, Vancouver Island residents can continue to return plastic bags, overwrap and foam packaging at 38 other depots on the Island. A tool to find the nearest depot can be found at Residents are also able to recycle a variety of packaging and paper in their blue box or cart at curbside or through recycling pick-up programs in multi-family buildings. A full list of packaging and paper that can be recycled is available at

Recycle BC is a not-for-profit organization responsible for residential packaging and paper recycling throughout BC, ensuring household material is collected, sorted and recycled. Plastic bags, overwrap and foam packaging are not collected at curbside because when these materials mix with other recyclables they do not separate well enough to meet the standards of North American recycling markets.

Since Recycle BC’s launch in 2014, British Columbians can now recycle new categories of packaging that were not included in many previous curbside or depot recycling programs – including milk cartons, foam polystyrene, plant pots, aluminum foil packaging, plastic bags, overwrap and drink cups.

Sustainability and recycling have been a priority and part of London Drugs’ daily operations since the 1980s. Partnering with a variety of regional, provincial and waste reduction partners, such as Recycle BC, London Drugs continues to be recognized for its waste stewardship across Western Canada. Additional items consumers can recycle at London Drugs include fluorescent lights, rechargeable and alkaline batteries, cell phones, cardboard, electronics and cartridges for printers and computers. More information on the many items London Drugs will take back for recycling can be found at

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