While these schemes might seem new and revolutionary here in the UK, you might be surprised to hear that they’ve been used in European countries since as far back as the 1980s. In these countries, customers return their bottles to a network of waste collection ‘vending machine’ type machines, which can be found in supermarkets, other shops, outlets or in the street.
Generally, customers in relevant countries will collect a large contingent of bottles, before bringing them to the nearest vendor in one single batch. They can then choose to be reimbursed in cash or to donate the equivalent sum to charity.
The setup and operating costs look set to be absorbed by plastic bottle producers via a levy.