Deposit Return Scheme: Your Handy Guide

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In the coming weeks, you might notice a small increase in the price of certain drinks in shops across Ireland. Don’t worry—it’s all part of a new initiative called the Deposit Return Scheme, set to launch on February 1. Let’s break down how it works and why it’s happening. Deposit Return Scheme: Your Handy Guide

1. The Basics:

  • Starting from February 1, when you buy a drink in a plastic bottle or aluminum can with the Re-turn logo, you’ll pay an additional deposit on top of the regular price.

2. What About Drinks Without the Logo?

  • To prevent waste, some plastic bottles and cans without the Re-turn logo will be available for a limited time from February 1, and these won’t have an added deposit fee.

3. Deposit Amounts:

  • You’ll pay a deposit of 15 cents for containers from 150ml to 500ml and 25 cents for containers over 500ml to three liters.

4. Claiming Your Money Back:

  • Participating shops, including Lidl and Tesco, will have Deposit Return machines where you can return your empty cans and bottles. You can also go to the counter for a refund.
  • Starting February 1, re-turn.ie will feature a map showing where to find these deposit return points.

5. Getting Your Deposit Back:

  • Consumers get their deposit back when they return the plastic bottle or can with the Re-turn logo to participating shops and supermarkets nationwide, provided it’s empty and undamaged.
  • If you use a reverse vending machine, you’ll receive a voucher for store purchases or a cash refund. If you go over the counter, retailers will check the logo and condition before providing a refund.

6. Beware of Containers Without the Logo:

  • If a drink container doesn’t have the Re-turn logo, it’s not eligible for any refund as no deposit has been paid. Avoid storing such bottles before the scheme goes live.

7. Why the Deposit Return Scheme?

  • Ireland aims to increase recycling rates, contributing to a circular economy. The EU set a target for Ireland to separate and collect 77% of plastic beverage bottles by 2025, rising to 90% in 2029. The Deposit Return Scheme has proven successful in boosting recycling rates in several European countries.

8. What Containers are Included:

  • Only drinks containers in PET plastic bottles, aluminum, and steel cans from 150ml to three liters with the Re-turn logo are part of the scheme. Milk and yogurt bottles, steel and tin cans that once contained food, and plastic bottles with cleaning supplies inside are not included.

9. Can I Still Use My Recycling Bins?

  • While all consumers should use recycling bins for mixed dry recyclables, returning bottles and cans with the Re-turn logo to participating shops ensures high-quality recyclate material.

10. Final Note:

  • Embrace the change, recycle responsibly, and contribute to a more sustainable future!

Deposit Return Scheme: Your Handy Guide

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