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Target to end glass recycling program across Montana

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BOZEMAN, Mont. - Retail giant Target plans to end its glass bottle recycling program at all of its Montana stores. The stores will continue accepting glass only through the end of February.

In 2010, Target became the only retailer in the state to offer glass recycling. They started out using bins in front of their stores, but the high volume prompted them to switch to roll-off boxes outside. Soon, they had six to eight 20-yard roll-off boxes filled each week.

A recycling manager told NBC Montana it is too costly to recycle glass.

"(Target has) spent an immense amount of money going ahead and making this project happen for the community," said David Leverett, at Four Corners Recycling near Bozeman. "Unfortunately, it's very expensive to move glass. Not including the transportation cost to get it to the facility, it costs $54 a ton for us to go ahead and crush it and then ship it down to Utah."

Residents in Bozeman who still want to recycle their glass can contactJ&K Recyclers or Gone Green Curbside Recycling to get their glass picked up for around $15 a month.

Some residents in the Missoula area said they save their glass and drive into town to drop it off at Target.

Target said the program is just too expensive, costing thousands of dollars for each shipment.

Target released a statement to NBC Montana Thursday:

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"Since opening our first store in 1962, Target has invested in the health and sustainability of our communities. In 2010, we became the only retailer in the state of Montana to have a glass bottle recycling program. However, due to the use of our facilities beyond their original intent and the lack of infrastructure in place at a state level, we regret that we are unable to continue the program. The affected stores will continue to accept guest recycling through February 28."

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