Redemption center to open again in Manchester

MANCHESTER, Iowa — In less than one month, a redemption center will open again in Manchester.

Can Shed, of Cedar Rapids, will open a satellite facility on Jan. 7 in the back of Manchester’s Unlimited Services Inc.

“We are planning on opening up a location part time,” said Troy Willard, owner and CEO of Can Shed. “Our business model is a little different. We encourage people to bring things back according to the bulk system. One of the big things people will like there in Manchester is they will be walking out with their money.”

Willard said Can Shed will utilize a 2,600-square-foot space in the back of Unlimited Services and hopes to employ some of the clients at Unlimited Services, an agency providing services to people who face a physical or mental challenge, to load bags of cans onto trailers.

Unlike other redemption centers, the sorting and bagging will not be done in house but will happen at the Cedar Rapids location.

Unlimited Services once operated a redemption center in Manchester, but it closed in August 2018 due to financial constraints. A local businessman reopened it one month later, but by the following summer, he was accused of defrauding customers.

Can Shed will step into that void, giving area residents the option of using a redemption center in their community again to receive their 5-cent deposits and to help keep recyclable material out of landfills and roadsides.

“The bottle bill (deposit law) has been one of Iowa’s most successful recycling stories,” Willard said. “Yes, it was passed 40-some years ago, and they used it as a litter control bill, but the benefit has been the recovery and recycling of the local plastic.”

Not only will people again be able to start recycling in the area, but the money residents receive from doing it helps support local organizations, events and businesses, said Donna Boss, executive director of Delaware County Economic Development.

In the past, money collected from deposit container drives has supported food banks, animal shelters and baseball teams, among others.

“We have many fundraisers go on throughout the entire county,” she said. “The money is staying here locally, and the multiplier effect will be a great opportunity. It doesn’t just help one; it helps many.”

Since the redemption center in Manchester closed, other businesses such as gas stations and grocers have filled the gap collecting bottles and cans. Now businesses will be able to work with Can Shed.

James Riley, manager at Fareway in Manchester, said his store has been a proponent of seeing a redemption center reopen in the city.

“Fareway has been very instrumental (in Can Shed opening) and is glad that the redemption center is going to open,” he said.