The Deposit Return Scheme is here!! Well, sort of…

After what seems like an age, it’s finally here… after a fashion! Ireland’s Deposit Return Scheme has been launched by Minister of State with responsibility for Communications and Circular Economy, Ossian Smyth. And we here at VOICE are absolutely delighted with this news.

Colin with Minister Smyth, explaining how the reverse vending machines work

Re-turn (Homepage | DRSI (Re-Turn) are the scheme operators and will be responsible for running the whole shebang. It’s quite the operation they have on their hands and we wish them all the best in their efforts. The launch of the DRS does not mean that we will see deposits on plastic bottles and cans in the shop any time soon; in fact, we won’t see that until February 2024.

Rather, the launch of the DRS will allow the ‘obliged industries’ (retailers, producers and importers) to register with the Scheme through Re-turn’s website. Their awareness-raising and education campaigns will begin in earnest next year. The Return for Change campaign has quite the head start on them in this regard and we will continue this work ourselves next year.

Minister of State with responsibility for Communications and the Circular Economy, Ossian Smyth

The groundswell of support is there amongst the public and really, the only the thing that can stand in the way of a successful beginning, is a lack of clear communication about the why, how and where of the Scheme. VOICE will continue to use the Return for Change campaign to engage with as many people and groups across the country as possible, to help join the dots and fill in the blanks where needed. If you would like us to speak with you or your organisation about any aspect of the DRS, just drop Colin an e-mail at