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[UPDATED]  Further to news from Scotland back in early September (see below), it seems England are joining in on the pledge to resurrect the return scheme for plastic bottles.

According to Sky News, Michael Gove says the Government is working with industry giants to try and tackle plastic pollution in the world’s oceans.  Gove goes on to say that over the next four weeks, individuals and organisations are being invited to tell ministers how such an initiative – where a small charge is returned to customers for each bottle they recycle – might reduce levels of pollution.

Whilst this is in its early stages of development, this is great news indeed.   If we are to reduced the 8 million tonnes of plastic dumped into our oceans, this is a problem for all of us and all of us have a responsibility to make a shift change in behaviour.

So, Scotland is planning on the return of the bottle deposit return scheme. Highlighted by Sky News, Nicola Sturgeon has committed the Scottish Government to the introduction of a deposit-return scheme for drinks bottles. It will apply to plastic and glass bottles, as well as aluminium cans. Nicola Sturgeon said,

“I can confirm today that we will design and introduce a deposit-return scheme for drinks containers, as an important part of our determination to tackle litter and clean up our streets,”


This move, partly promoted by Sky’s Ocean Rescue Campaign, has long been debated. As always, there are views on the subject from both sides of the fence.

The old scheme fizzled out in the late 1970’s and has been quoted as a “simple scheme and an old one”. In the 70’s, the bottles were glass and could be re-used. Today, things are different. That said, with shocking news on an almost daily basis of the effect waste management is having on our environment and the belief that such a campaign would reduce the number of littered bottles across Britain by 50,000 every day, a call for a more circular approach to drinks bottles and cans is still a move in the right direction. Yes?

There is little doubt that harsh measures have worked when it comes to protecting our environment. Marine Conservation Society quoted the introduction of the 5p charge has almost halved the number of bags littered on our beaches.

Campaigners say cashback on empty bottles would reduce the number of littered bottles in Britain by 50,000 every day.

“This year, for the first time since the charges were introduced, we’ve seen a significant drop in the number and that can only be as a result of the 5p charge which is now in place in all the home nations.”


How can you get ahead of the curve?

If like the 5p bag charge, all nations across the UK adopt the same approach, the opportunities are endless.  Get ahead of the curve, set the standard across your industry, improve staff morale and your Corporate Social Responsibility.

Good news, there is already a product available which can incentivise your staff to recycle plastic bottles, aluminium cans and paper cups.

Introducing CafeCrush

CafeCrush literally crushes plastic bottles, paper cups and aluminium cans and has been adopted by major brands including ISS Facilities.
CafeCrush - ideal solution for bottle return scheme

For more information on CafeCrush visit our product page or call us on 0845 0700 624

At Unisan UK, we offer solutions to ensure sustainability. We know people want to do the right thing, so why make it hard. That’s why we provide game-changing solutions that help our customers to think differently about recycling & hygiene at work and ensure it is easy for them to make the right choice.

Recycling laws in Wales have changed. Is your business compliant?