DRS administrator unveiled

Industry leaders have voiced concerns over plans for a deposit return scheme.
DRS is scheduled to go live in Scotland on 1 July 2022.

DRINKS producers, retailers and trade associations have taken a major step forward in the development of Scotland’s forthcoming Deposit Return Scheme (DRS), with the formation of a scheme administrator.

If approved by the Scottish Government, Circularity Scotland Limited will operate as a not-for-profit scheme administrator, responsible for delivering DRS when it goes live.
DRS is expected to go live on 1 July 2022, with a 20p deposit to be applied to all aluminium, PET plastic and glass drinks containers between 50ml and 3L. Implementation of the scheme, which was initially set to go live in 2021, was postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

When DRS goes live, the scheme administrator will be responsible for collecting packaging covered by the scheme, making payments of deposits and handling fees to return point operators, and meeting collection targets for scheme packaging.

Circularity Scotland Limited’s members include AG Barr, Coca-Cola European Partners, Highland Spring, Refresco Beverages and Britivic, as well as Tennent Caledonian Breweries (C&C Group), Heineken UK, Budweiser Brewing Group, Asahi UK and Carlsberg UK.

Trade association members include the Scottish Grocers Federation (SGF), Federation of Independent Retailers (NFRN), Association of Convenience Stores (ACS), and the Scottish Wholesale Association, with retailer members including Tesco, Morrisons, Sainsbury’s, Lidl, Co-op and Marks and Spencer also joining.

Donald McCalman, interim director of Circularity Scotland, said: “This is an important moment in the move to deliver a deposit return scheme in Scotland. We have a shared vision for a scheme that delivers truly impactful environmental benefits and contributes to a circular economy in Scotland.

“We’re confident that our not-for-profit company can help to operate a DRS system that works for everyone. The DRS will provide huge environmental benefits for Scotland and accelerate the Scottish Government’s commitment to achieving Net Zero carbon emissions by 2045.”

Pete Cheema, chief executive of the SGF, said: “We look forward to contributing to the work of Circularity Scotland to deliver an efficient deposit return scheme that works for Scottish convenience retailers and their customers. Convenience retailers will be at the centre of an effective circular economy by offering essential services like return points close to where people live and work.”

Stuart Reddish, national president of the NFRN, said: “As the first retail trade association to support the introduction of DRS in Scotland, we are delighted that we have reached this important milestone in the introduction of a scheme. Our members – news and convenience retailers across Scotland – will be working in their communities to provide return points and to help Scotland achieve its target of a 90 per cent return rate.”

  • The companies and trade associations that initially comprise Circularity Scotland are:

Producers including A.G. Barr plc, AB InBev UK Limited, Accolade Wines Limited, Asahi UK Ltd, Britvic Soft Drinks Limited, Coca-Cola European Partners Great Britain Limited, Danone Waters UK & Ireland, Heineken UK Limited, Highland Spring Ltd, Lucozade Ribena Suntory Ltd, Nestlé Waters UK, Refresco Beverages UK Limited and Tennent Caledonian Breweries UK Limited.

Retail members include Co-operative Group Limited, Lidl Great Britain Limited, Marks and Spencer plc, Sainsbury’s Supermarkets Limited, Tesco Stores Limited and Wm Morrison Supermarkets plc.

They are joined by retail and wholesale trade associations including Association of Convenience Stores, National Federation of Retail Newsagents, Scottish Grocers’ Federation and Scottish Wholesale Association.

The British Beer and Pub Association whose members include: Keg Logistics, Admiral Taverns Ltd, Adnams, Budweiser Brewing Group UK&I, Arkell’s Brewery, Asahi UK Ltd, Black Sheep Brewery, Brakspear Pub Company, Budweiser Budvar UK, C&C Group PLC, Caledonian Hertaible Ltd, Cermons Brewing Ltd, Carlsberg UK, Daleside Brewery, Daniel Batham & Son Ltd, Daniel Thwaites PLC, Diageo PLC, Everards Brewery Ltd, Frederic Robinson Ltd, Fuller, Smith and Turner PLC, George Bateman & Son Ltd, Gray & Sons, Greene King, G1 Group, Hall & Woodhouse Ltd, Harvey & Son (Lewes) Ltd, Harviestoun Brewery, Heavitree Brewery PLC, Heineken UK, Heron & Brearley Ltd, Hogs Back Brewery Ltd, Holden’s Brewery Ltd, Hook Norton Brewery Co Ltd, Hydes Brewery, Innis & Gunn, J.W. Lees & Co, Joseph Holt Ltd, Laine’s Brewery, Liberation Group, Marston’s PLC, McMullen & Sons Ltd, Molson Coors, Hawthorne Leisure, Palmers, Punch, RW Randall Ltd, Rosemount Taverns, S. A. Brain & Co Ltd, Shepherd Neame Ltd, St Austell Brewery Co Ltd, T&R Theakston, Thomas Hardy Brewing & Packaging, Timothy Taylor’s & Co Ltd, Titanic Brewery, Trust Inns, Wadworth & Co Ltd, Wells & Co, Woodforde’s Brewery, and Youngs & Co’s Brewery.

The British Soft Drinks Association whose members include: AM Fresh, Aston Manor, Belvoir Fruit Farms, Clearly Drinks Ltd, Corrigan’s Original, Cracker Drinks Co, Encirc, Fentimans, Fruits of Jannah, Global Brands, Good Natured (Happy Monkey) Ltd, Holy Industries, innocent, Jolly’s Drinks, Kingsland Drinks, Kingsley Beverages UK Ltd, Nexba UK, Nichols plc, PepsiCo International Ltd, Princes Gate Spring Water Ltd, Princes Ltd, Purity Soft Drinks, Radnor Hills, Red Bull UK Ltd, Roxane UK, SHS Group Drinks Division, Sneak Energy, Stute Foods, Symrise, Tata Consumer Products, Tropicana UK Ltd, Vitamin Well, and The Wonderful Company.

The Wine and Spirit Trade Association whose members include: Accolade Wines, Awin Barratt Siegel, Distil PLC, Harpalion Spirits Ltd, Keepr’s, One Gin, Renegade Urban Winery, Alpine Wines, Bancroft Wines, Jensen’s, California Wines, Digby Fine English, Fox & Fox Mayfield, and Gordon & Macphail.