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  • Lidl becomes the first supermarket to pilot its own bottle return scheme across an entire city, offering customers unlimited cash rewards  
  • The move comes after Scottish Government delayed the introduction of its Deposit Return Scheme (DRS) and will ensure that shoppers can still recycle their bottles and cans in store
  • With no deposit placed on the product’s retail price, customers will receive a 5p reward for each eligible item returned – which they can redeem against their shop or donate to charity
  • The pilot is being rolled out to all 21 of the discounter’s Glasgow stores, and is expected to recycle 10.5 tonnes of plastic and aluminium material every month 

Lidl has become the first supermarket to roll out its own bottle return scheme trial. Launching today, shoppers in Glasgow can enjoy unlimited cash rewards in return for empty PET plastic and aluminium drinks containers via in-store reverse vending machines.

Rolling out across all 21 of its Glasgow stores, with potential to roll out further, shoppers will receive a 5p reward for each eligible item that they return. This can either be redeemed against their shopping or donated to Lidl’s long-standing charity partner, The STV Children’s appeal, which it has been supporting since 2011.

Incentivising shoppers to play a part in reducing plastic pollution, there is no cap on the number of items that can be returned, and the discounter will accept qualifying bottles and cans purchased from any retailer, as long as they are clean and uncrushed*.

The launch comes after Scottish Government delayed the introduction of its Deposit Return Scheme (DRS) from its original go-live date of 16 August 2023. Lidl’s own scheme will ensure that shoppers can continue to benefit from the infrastructure that had already been put in place by the discounter.

Unlike DRS, the discounter’s bottle return scheme does not place a deposit on the retail price of the original product.

It’s anticipated that the pilot will result in a minimum 10.5 tonnes of plastic and aluminium material being recycled each month, with the material which will be retained and used to create new plastic and aluminium product.

Richard Bourns, Chief Commercial Officer at Lidl GB comments:

“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 utilising 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 is running for a trial period in participating Glasgow stores from 8th February 2024 until 11th August 2024. Find out more about the Lidl Return Scheme at www.lidl.co.uk/returnscheme.

 *The machines will accept single-use drinks packaging made from either polyethylene terephthalate (or PET plastic) or aluminium, are 100ml – 3L in size and have a readable barcode to scan at the point of donation. Dairy items, such as HDPE plastic milk or yoghurt drinks, Tetra-pack, paper-based cartons, glass or pouches are not eligible for return.

The following Lidl stores are taking part in the Lidl Return Scheme, which launches on 8th February 2024:

  • Maryhill
  • Duke Street
  • St. Rollox
  • Baillieston
  • Crookston
  • Darnley
  • Tollcross
  • Govan
  • Bearsden
  • Pollokshaws
  • Balmore Road
  • Jamaica Street
  • Victoria Road
  • Rutherglen
  • Partick
  • Yoker
  • Giffnock
  • Finnieston
  • Barrhead
  • Robroyston Retail Park
  • Anniesland

This list may be amended at any time by Lidl GB and updates to the list can be found here www.lidl.co.uk/returnscheme.

*This estimation is based on previous return scheme trials.

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