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Preparing for WA’s new container deposit scheme

A new container deposit scheme will be rolled out across Western Australia from 2 June 2020. If you sell or manufactures beverages, here is a rundown on what the new scheme means for you.

How will the container deposit scheme work?

The container deposit scheme will allow Western Australians to return eligible beverage containers to dedicated refund points to receive a refund of 10 cents per container.

Unlike WA’s previous container deposit scheme, people must now return containers to a dedicated refund point/collection centre to receive their refund. People can also choose to donate their refund to a charity, community group or not for profit organisation which is registered with the scheme.

Which kind of containers are covered by the scheme?

Most aluminium, glass, plastic, steel and liquid paperboard containers between 150ml and three litres will be eligible for a refund under the container deposit scheme.

Other drink containers such as cordial, wine and spirit bottles, water and wine casks, plain and flavoured milk in cartons of one litre or more are excluded from the container deposit scheme and should continue to be recycled via your residential recycling collection.

See the full list of containers that are eligible and ineligible for the scheme.

What impact will the container deposit scheme have on small business?

If you manufacture beverages in containers that fall under the scheme, you’ll need to comply with refund mark labelling requirements. The refund mark label for WA will be the same as those used in other states and territories. Visit the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation (DWER) website for more information on labelling requirements.

For businesses that sell beverages, if you are introducing a new beverage for sale in the state, it will be an offence to supply if it does not meet refund mark labelling requirements. Under the scheme, there is no requirement for retail businesses to provide the container deposit scheme refunds to customers. You can however register your interest to participate in the collection network. To register your interest, visit the DWER website.

Tip: there will be a 24 month transition period for the container deposit scheme to be introduced; you have until 2 June 2022 to ensure you are meeting labelling and sales requirements.

More information

Visit the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation website for further details about the scheme.

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