SIBA responds to Minister statement on Scottish Deposit Return Scheme

Responding to the Scottish Minister’s statement today on the implementation of the Deposit Return Scheme, SIBA Scottish Director Jamie Delap said:

“The Minister clearly acknowledged in her statement today the challenges facing small brewers and the hospitality sector in delivering Scotland’s ambitious Deposit Return Scheme and has hinted that there will now be a delay. However no clear timescale has been offered only a commitment to introduce it as soon as practically possible.

“Small independent brewers care about sustainability and are looking forward to working with the Minister to address the very real issues and have called for a stepped introduction to provide small producers extra time to prepare.

“The challenges with the scheme as it has been designed go much further than just its timetable and the Minister is yet to address these. As it stands it will impose significant costs and reduce the choice and availability of independent craft beer in Scotland. No attempt has yet been made to address the deliverability of the online takeback service which will make selling online uneconomical for small brewers. Many of these issues could be resolved by aligning the Scottish DRS with the one being introduced in England, Wales and NI so we have a truly circular UK economy.”

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