Packaging firms oppose Scottish container deposit idea

Posted on 1st June, 2015

Zero WasteScotland, which is seen by some recycling lobbyists as setting the pace in recycling, has through its Zero Waste Scotland organisation come up with proposals for deposits on drinks containers.

Research for Zero Waste Scotland has suggested that a deposit scheme could work alongside the existing packaging waste legislation involving PRNs and has called for further discussion of the issue.

Minister Richard Lochhead was inspired to look at deposit schemes after visiting Sweden in 2013 and seeing a scheme in action. But, the packaging sector has come out in opposition to the scheme. Packaging Recycling Group Scotland, which has the support of brands such as Coca Cola, Britvic and Red Bull as well as the aluminium and plastics sector trade associations, reason that the benefits would only be marginal. They say also that a deposit scheme would be “costly, inconvenient and confusing” for consumers.

Jane Bickerstaffe, spokeswoman for the Scottish group, said: “We do not support the introduction of a deposit-refund system in Scotland and recommend alternative proposals to promote recycling, reduce waste and tackle litter, which we believe will be more effective.”

She added: “Our members, including major brands, engage with thousands of consumers daily and have an excellent track record over many years of leading recycling and litter prevention and reduction initiatives that work and engage the public.”