Lidl has become the first supermarket chain to initiate a bottle return scheme trial, debuting in Glasgow. This groundbreaking trial, starting today, enables customers to receive unlimited cash rewards for depositing empty PET plastic and aluminium drink containers into reverse vending machines available in-store. This initiative is currently available across all 21 Lidl stores in Glasgow, with the possibility of further expansion.

Customers participating in the scheme are rewarded with 5p for every eligible container returned. These rewards can be used to offset shopping costs or donated to the STV Children’s Appeal, a charity Lidl has proudly supported since 2011. The scheme encourages consumer participation in reducing plastic pollution by accepting an unlimited number of qualifying bottles and cans from any retailer, provided they are clean and uncrushed.

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Lidl Bottle

This launch follows a delay in the Scottish Government’s Deposit Return Scheme (DRS), initially set to start on 16 August 2023. Lidl’s independent initiative leverages existing infrastructure, allowing customers to continue benefiting from recycling services without the additional cost of a deposit on the retail price of products.

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Lidl anticipates that the trial will facilitate the recycling of at least 10.5 tonnes of plastic and aluminium materials monthly. These materials will be repurposed to manufacture new products, aligning with Lidl’s commitment to sustainability.

Richard Bourns, Chief Commercial Officer at Lidl GB, expressed the company’s dedication to eliminating unnecessary waste. “We’re on a mission to eliminate all unnecessary waste, and with over 95% of our own-brand packaging now recyclable, reusable, or refillable, we’ve been making great progress. We know that Lidl shoppers share this passion, and we hope that utilizing this infrastructure, which might otherwise have been left dormant, will help to make recycling their cans and bottles even more convenient for them. With our extra incentive thrown in, and no cap on the number of items that can be recycled, it’s a win-win for all.”

The Lidl Return Scheme trial will run from 8th February 2024 to 11th August 2024 at participating Glasgow stores.

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