Oregon Launches First Statewide Refillable Bottle System in U.S.
By Cassandra Profita
Thousands of thicker, heavier beer bottles are popping up on store shelves across Oregon as part of the first statewide refillable bottle system in the country, and supporters are hoping it might catch on in other states, too.
At Double Mountain Brewery in Hood River, bottling machines are filling a long line of shiny brown refillable beer bottles with a new pale ale.
It's a triumphant moment for brewery founder Matt Swihart. After six years of being the only brewery in Oregon running a refillable bottle system, Double Mountain finally has company.
"I felt like Don Quixote a little bit, just kind of racing uphill at windmills," Swihart said. "I was called literally crazy and insane for even attempting it, and fellow brewers were speculating that it wouldn't work."