Frequently Asked Questions

Earthware’s aim is to keep single-use takeout containers out of landfills. We want everyone to enjoy the convenience of takeout while also reducing their carbon footprint. This is how it works:

  1. Restaurants purchase containers from Earthware and pass along the deposit cost to the consumer.

  2. Consumer pays a deposit per takeout container.  Some Earthware providers include the fee in the total.

  3. Enjoy your meal.
  4. Rinse the container and set it aside until your next visit to a any bottle depot in Calgary and bottle depots in surrounding communities. See map of depots.
  5. Bring into participating bottle depots for a refund. (min. refund of 25¢ per container and 25¢ per lid) – the bottle depot keeps the remaining 20¢ as a Processing Fee. Please your lids and containers are unstacked to allow bottle depots to count them easily. Remember ONLY Earthware containers will be accepted and they cannot be cracked, broken or contain food remnants.
  6. Containers are collected from Depots by Earthware.
  7. Earthware washes and sanitizes according to Alberta Health Services regulations.
  8. Containers are redistributed to restaurants, hotels, grocers etc.
We charge Earthware Providers, like restaurants, a 70¢ deposit that they may pass a portion or the entire deposit on to their customers.  When bottle depots return containers to us we pay them the full 50¢ per container (25¢ per lid and 25¢ per base).  Our agreement with the bottle depots is that they will keep a portion of the fee for their operational costs and pay customers 25¢ per lid and 25¢ per container.
Similarly, when a customer buys a bottle of soda or any other beverage, they will be charged a deposit and a recycling fee.  The deposit is the portion that they will receive from the bottle depot.  The recycling fee is used for operational costs.

Customers: Use your regular ordering channels (direct to the restaurants or through your delivery apps) and the restaurants will pack as much of your order in Earthware containers as they can. Here is where you can find businesses using Earthware.


Food Providers: Go to our Shop page to order a variety of containers!


The sooner your return them, the better. Why short change yourself?

There are two ways to return your containers:

  1. Go to Returns to find a bottle depot location near you.
  2. Reach out to participating bottle depots and see if they have a pick-up service or you can connect with various non-profits and donate your containers and lids.

Yes please, they will need a quick rinse to remove food and liquid. Please don’t put them in the dishwasher we’ll take care of that with our super duper washer.

Please tell them about us and direct them to our website.  You can use your voice on social media to let them know. You can also direct us to them from our contact page.  We will reach out to them right away.  More providers equals less waste.

Providers want to offer the most convenient takeout service possible for their customers but some meals do not lend themselves to Earthware containers… like pizza. Our partners are committed to reducing waste so they are leading the pack by offering an Earthware option!

We started this initiative in Calgary and expanded to communities around Calgary and Canmore and Banff and beyond.  If you would like to know when Earthware is coming to your city, please contact us by clicking here.

About The Containers

Before Earthware containers reach any business for reuse, they are commercially washed and sanitized, and thoroughly inspected. We’ve created a six-point inspection that ensures it. Our washing and sanitization standards far exceed government regulations and are more stringent than even restaurant dishwashing. You can trust that your Earthware is clean, safe and looks like new.

It is never advisable to put plastic of any kind in the microwave.  So don’t start now. If you need to reheat or freeze your takeout, please use your own dishes. 

Earthware reusable containers are made of reusable and recyclable #5 polypropylene. They are 100% BPA (bisphenol) free and are NSF (National Sanitation Foundation) certified, which means the containers are manufactured using only FDA approved raw materials.

On the other hand, many single-use takeout containers, including compostables, are filled with these very harmful chemicals and unsafe plastics.

Earthware reusable containers have an estimated 50 use lifespan, after which they are retired and turned into other useful plastic products. 

Most single-use takeout containers and cutlery marked as compostable simply are not. If you look closely, many containers say it takes at least 90 days to commercially compost them. Canadian cities that have composting solutions typically work on a 21 day system and thus cannot compost any takeout containers. They end up in landfills. 

Many cardboard containers have a harmful lining that cannot be composted at all.

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