UK Deposit Returns Schemes – should I be interested?

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I have recently responded to the Defra consultation seeking to establish the merits of introducing a deposit return scheme on single use drinks containers in England Wales and Northern Ireland.  This follow on from plans to develop a scheme in Scotland announced last year.  The Defra consultation was launched in mid-February and closed on 13 May.  In March Defra preempted the primary purpose of initial consultation by announcing plans to introduce a DRS,  potentially in late 2020, subject to the usual caveat of  the results of further, more detailed consultations.

I didn’t bother you all in February with what appeared to be a very open-ended set of ideas for a proposal that looked unlikely to get very far, or at least not very soon.  I don’t think I was necessarily wrong but in light of the late March announcement, I do now think that if you are not at least aware of the strategic issues and starting to thinking around possible local business and place based issues and impact then you need to before any formal consultations “later in the year”.  Even if you are not impacted directly most of  your local partner business could be and some might be in need of a bit of local leadership and direction on what is likely to be a set of truly cross cutting destination based issues.

To help explain why I think this is prudent I have added a briefing note to the page  on the RDS consultation, under the “Consultations” menu tab of Or go direct to that page at:

Apologies if I am wrong about the strategic importance of this, or if it is something you are already addressing.


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