Container Overload

At Earth’s General Store, we love bulk! We also love that our customer love to reuse containers. Refill Don’t Landfill has been our mantra for a couple of decades, unfortunately, it appears we have reached Container Overload. We are getting more donated containers than we can handle so we need to update our policy.

We especially love being a part of your journey to lessen your impact on the planet by reusing your own bags and containers to refill at our store.

Over the years, we have encouraged donations of extra bottles, bags and containers so that customers could use them to refill instead of using new bags or purchasing a pre-packaged product. Many of these containers can be reused hundreds of times instead of seeing a single use and then being processed through our recycling system.

Welcoming customer-donated containers has been a vital way of reducing waste because it ensures we always have refillable containers for folks to choose from when they forget to bring their own. We know that people sometimes forget to bring in their bags and containers. It happens to the best of us 🙂

Unfortunately, we often receive donated containers that are unclean, contaminated, or not really of any quality to be reused which puts a huge strain on our staff to try and sort, sanitize, and manage the pile of donations we receive. Sometimes contaminated containers get intermingled with clean, sanitized containers. When these are found by customers, it might turn them off from refilling altogether. We want everyone to have a positive refilling experience.

Container Overload

We are storing way too many reusable containers.

Donated container and bag policy

To achieve this, we will only accept clean items in good condition for our reusable collection of containers and we will no longer accept donated essential oil bottles, which are near impossible to fully clean.

All donated items are to be given to a staff person who will inspect your donation before it is accepted.  And while donations are always appreciated, we reserve the right to turn items away due to storage space limitations.

Refill Don’t Landfill

We enthusiastically encourage people to bring in their one container and bags (we even give you a 5 cent ‘reward’ for each container). Last year, our customers reused over 100,000 bags and containers. This is significant.

Thank you, as always, for doing your part to Refill, Not Landfill!


If you have excess bottles and containers the Reuse Centre would likely take some of the flow. Unfortunately, anything beyond that will have to be recycled.