Bottle deposit scheme ‘must not become a further tax' on hospitality

18 February 2019 by
Bottle deposit scheme ‘must not become a further tax' on hospitality

The government must ensure a bottle deposit scheme does not become a further tax on the hospitality sector that fails to recognise the work already being done, UKHospitality has said.

Plans to overhaul the waste system include a proposed deposit return scheme for cans as well as plastic and glass bottles, with a consultation launched today.

The scheme would see customers pay a deposit at the point of purchase, which is returned through when the bottle or can is recycled.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, has said this could see an extra three billion plastic bottles recycled.

In its response to the consultation launch, UKHospitality said the industry has a strong record on recycling, adding that it should be considered independently as the majority of bottles purchased from the sector would be consumed on site.

Chief executive Kate Nicholls said: "Hospitality businesses have long been working hard to tackle plastic and packaging waste, such as the widespread phasing out of plastic straws and many coffee shops having introduced schemes to encourage use of reusable cups. UKHospitality has partnered with other industry bodies such as the British Institute of Innkeeping (BII) to successfully raise awareness of the problems and promote best practice and effective voluntary measures.

"But while we will highlight that progress to government, and our willingness to tackle waste issues, we must emphasise that any additional measures must be proportionate and that further taxes on an already burdened sector are likely to undo that good work. Any new DRS measures introduced must also be consistent with those due to be introduced in Scotland."

Last week UKHospitality was one of 30 food industry bodies to warn secretary of state Michael Gove that they will stop assisting on government consultations, including plans to curb plastic use, until the threat of a no-deal Brexit is resolved.

Today Nicholls added: "We regret that the government is publishing so many consultations so close to Brexit. As we and other industry bodies have stated, businesses can't just carry on as usual when there is so much uncertainty. It is unhelpful to face yet more obstacles when we all need to be working on Brexit."

Industry chiefs ‘pause' cooperation with government until ‘catastrophic impact' of no-deal Brexit resolved>>

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