The Iowa Grocery Industry Association is making another attempt to change Iowa’s 23-year-old bottle deposit law. Members of the association will ask customers to sign a petition calling on legislators to adopt a new “comprehensive” recycling law that includes cans. Bob Kramer is the president of the Fareway Food Store chain headquartered in Boone.Kramer says they want to re-shape the law through education and participation in the interest of food safety and comprehensive recycling. Kramer says a majority of the containers sold with deposits are cans. He says the nickel deposit on those cans only serves to take care of a small amount of the trash thrown along Iowa’s roadways.He says one alternative is doing away with the deposit and instituting a one-cent recycling tax. Kramer says they haven’t come up with a definite plan, but the best result would have Iowans putting cans in their recycling bins at the curb. Ron Pearson, the C-E-O of the Hy-Vee food stores, says the cans pose a real health threat to stores.Pearson says the cans can carry listeria, e-coli, salmonella and other diseases. Pearson though, says while the threat is present, there’s never been a case of listeria linked directly to returned cans.Pearson says it’s hard to trace the cause of listeria, but he says we should be thinking about the threat in light of what’s happening in out society. Pearson says they don’t want to wipe out the recycling of the cans, they just want to change how it’s done.Pearson says a change in Iowa’s law could even increase the amount of cans that’re recycled — which is currently 93-percent. Opposition groups dispute that claim, saying litter along roadways would increase if the deposit is repealed.
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