Environmental regulation expert, Lorax Compliance, has launched a new service to support businesses worldwide that are required to pay deposit fees for drinks and beverages.
Compliance schemes across the globe require manufacturers, brand holders and importers to report and pay fees on the amount of plastic packaging they place on the market in terms of goods for sale, such as beverage bottles.
Scotland is the latest country to announce a national deposit return scheme. This initiative will also require Scottish consumers to pay a small deposit for plastic and glass bottles and aluminium cans, which is added onto a product’s initial cost. The consumer is refunded this deposit when the product is returned to a shop for recycling.
Bottle deposit return schemes fall under EU Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) legislation, which requires beverage manufacturers to report periodically to recycling organisations with details of the product’s packaging. Under the scheme, businesses must pay fees calculated according to the amount of waste placed on the market, instead of requiring local or central government to cover the cost.
Scotland’s latest initiative is set to mirror deposit return projects in countries such as Canada, Germany, Norway and Sweden, which boast plastic bottle recycling rates of more than 90 per cent. On October 2, 2017, the UK’s government issued a call for evidence on how reward and return schemes for drinks containers could work in England.
Lorax Compliance already has a robust environmental compliance service in place for global businesses supporting other Producer Responsibility regulations. Lorax’s software calculates the fees they must pay according to the volume of waste they place on the market, ensuring companies do not over or under pay at each step of the process.
Manufacturers who fail to meet their EPR environmental compliance obligations as part of the new initiative run the risk of large fines and reputational damage. “Staying on top of new legislation can prove tricky for many companies — particularly if they don’t have the resource to research upcoming changes in house,” said Michelle Carvell, director and COO at Lorax Compliance. “This new initiative is no exception, with its potential to cause confusion and uncertainty for brands.
“This extension to support beverage schemes is a natural progression to ensure producers have a full compliance service. We urge drinks manufacturers operating in Scotland and worldwide who believe the new initiative may apply to them to seek advice to clarify their environmental obligations and guide them through the challenges of product compliance,” concluded Carvell.