|Name||Solid Waste Management; Deposit Beverage Container Law (Act 176) |
|Enacted||6/25/2002 (updated 2013)|
|Regulations||Hawaii Revised Statutes, Chapter 342G, Part VIII, §§342G-101 - 342G-122|
|Beverages Not Covered||
Containers ≤ 2 liters of the following materials:
|Amount of Deposit||5¢|
|Reclamation System||Certified Redemption Centers (CRCs) operated by privately-owned, State-permitted solid waste facilities, or Reverse Vending Machines (RVMs). |
Handling fees (effective October 1, 2023) :
Aluminum and bi-metal cans: 3.4¢
Plastic bottles: 4.4¢
Glass bottles: 9.2¢
|Other Fees||A non-refundable "container fee" (added to price of beverage) of 1¢ - 1.5¢ per container is paid by beverage manufacturers into the Deposit Beverage Container fund to help pay redemption center handling fees. The container fee fluctuates based on the redemption rate of the prior fiscal year; if the redemption rate is under 70%, it is set to 1¢; if it is 70% or more, it is set to 1.5¢. |
|Unredeemed Deposits||Retained by State Department of Health.|
|Fees and Taxes||Property of state; used for program administration.|
The rates for 2013 through 2019 are "redemption rates," with curbside volumes having been deducted from the state-reported, overall redemption rate. 
The rates prior to 2013 are the state-reported, overall redemption rate, and contain an unknown amount of curbside-recycled beverage containers.
Table: State-reported overall redemption rates (2006-2012). 
|% of All Beverages Sold That Are Covered By Deposit||88% |
Hawaii's Deposit Beverage Container (DBC) program, also known as HI5, has a 5¢ deposit that is refunded to consumers. Consumers are refunded either per container or by weight of the return.
Additionally, a nonrefundable "container fee" which helps to cover the operational costs of the program. The law specifies that the container fee be reviewed annually, and is set at 1¢ per container when the annual redemption rate is below 70%, and 1.5¢ per container when the redemption rate exceeds 70%. The Director of the program is authorized to suspend any increase in this fee if the size of the deposit beverage container fund is sufficient to maintain operations.
|1¢||2008-2011, 2015-2022 |
Because the law only requires beverage distributors pay the container fee to the Department of Health, there is no specific guidance on how retailers decide to pass on the fee to their customers.
The program pays certified redemption centers a “handling fee” for each container that is verified as being recycled - this includes deposit beverage containers that are either transported out-of-state or transported to a department permitted recycling facility. The handling fee is evaluated on an annual basis by Hawaii's Department of Health.
Image: "Making Sense of the HI-5 Fund." Deposit and refund amounts for containers in Hawaii. Published May 2013.
The program requires redemption centers to submit regular reports (minimally, requests for payment must be received twice per month) and consumer refunds may be calculated by weight according to the segregated rates determined by the department for each material type (aluminum, plastic, glass and bi-metal). Recyclers are not required to separate container by brand.
All beverage retailers must have signage of the nearest certified redemption center (CRC). As of May 26, 2023, 8 airline companies are exempt for paying the deposit and container fees. This exemption will expire on May 31, 2024. 
 "Haw. Code R. § 11-282-31 - Exemptions." Retailer exemptions vary depending on local population density, proximity to a redemption center, and store size. Hawaii Department of Health.
"Overview of Handling Fee Evaluation Results for the Deposit Beverage Container Program." Hawaii Department of Health. 2023.
 "BEVERAGE CONTAINER FEE TO DECREASE BY HALF CENT - Lower annual redemption rate triggers a decrease of container fee."July 27, 2015. Personal communication from Michael Casey, Hawaii Office of Solid Waste Management. August 16, 2018.
 "Hawaii Department of Health - Hawaii Deposit Beverage Container Statistics." 2013-2022: personal communication with Michael Burke and Wendy Okazaki, Hawaii State Department of Health, Solid & Hazardous Waste Branch, Office of Solid Waste Management. In order to show true refund redemption rates here, small percentages have been deducted from reported redemption rates [=recycling rates] to account for deposit containers recycled through the Honolulu curbside program (2014 is the most recent data available) as follows: aluminum (0.9%), bimetal (2.9%), glass (1.3%), plastic (2.7%), and total (1.6%), 2015 and prior years. 2022.
 "Beverage container fee increases by half cent to continue successful recycling program." Hawaii Department of Health. July 18, 2012.
 "2019 Beverage Market Data Analysis." Container Recycling Institute. 2022.
 "Beverage Container Fee to Remain One Cent ($0.01) Through August 31, 2023." Hawaii Department of Health. August 1, 2022.
 "Distributors." State of Hawaii, Department of Health. May 26, 2023.
Hawaii Department of Health Annual Solid Waste Management Reports:
"Report to the Twenty-Seventh Legislature State of Hawaii 2016: Annual Report on Solid Waste Management." Hawaii Department of Health. December 2015.
"Report to the Twenty-Seventh Legislature State of Hawaii 2013: Annual Report on Solid Waste Management." Hawaii Department of Health. December 2012.
"Report to the Twenty-Seventh Legislature State of Hawaii 2012: Annual Report on Solid Waste Management." Hawaii Department of Health. December 2011.
"Report to the Twenty-Seventh Legislature State of Hawaii 2011: Annual Report on Solid Waste Management." Hawaii Department of Health. December 2010.
Deposit Handling Fee Papers and Reports:
"Overview of Handling Fee Evaluation Results for the Deposit Beverage Container Program." Hawaii Department of Health. 2022.
"Evaluation of the Current Handling Fees Paid to Certified Redemption Centers." Pratt, Wendy. Crowe LLP. Prepared for Hawaii Department of Health. June 30, 2022.
"Overview of Handling Fee Evaluation Results for the Deposit Beverage Container (DBC) Program." Hawaii Department of Health. 2021.
"Hawaii Deposit Beverage Container (DBC) Program Study of Handling Fees." (Summary) Hawaii Department of Health. July 2019.
"Study of Deposit Beverage Container Handling Fees - Final Report." Voeller, Lisa. Crowe LLP. Prepared for Hawaii Department of Health. May 13, 2019.
Hawaii State Auditor Reports:
"Audit of the Department of Health's Glass Advance Disposal Fee Program." The Auditor, State of Hawaii. December 2014.
"A Study to Identify Local Alternatives to Shipping Non-Deposit Glass out of the State of Hawai'i." The Auditor, State of Hawaii. December 2014.
"Management and Financial Audit of the Deposit Beverage Container Program, June 30, 2012." The Auditor, State of Hawaii. November 2013.
Last Updated on November 1, 2023.