Complex Deposit Return Scheme comes with financial risks for sector


UKHospitality Scotland has responded to the Cross Party Group on Beer and Pubs report on the impact of the ‘complex’ Scottish Deposit Return Scheme (DRS) that is due to be introduced next year making clear the additional financial risks that it will cause.

UK Hospitality Scotland Executive Director Leon Thompson, said, “The complexity of the scheme brings with it inherent financial risks to hospitality businesses. Scotland members continue to be concerned about secure storage, the theft of containers and the breakage of glass, all of which will result in the loss of deposits – a situation that would hit businesses hard.

“There is also no resolution to the issue of VAT paid on deposits. Unless HMRC makes changes, then businesses and consumers will be paying 24p per container, but will only receive 20p back. DRS will become another form of taxation on businesses and customers, adding to the cost-of-living crisis. UKHospitality continues to press the UK Government and the Scottish Government to resolve this.

“Given that eventually there will be three separate schemes running across the four nations of the UK, we are working with members to arrive at shared solutions and approaches. However, it is clear that all businesses will need to make significant changes to their financial and operating systems in order to comply with the complexity and variance in the regulations. This also threatens the prospect of a dramatic reduction in choice for Scottish customers as businesses withdraw from the market.

“As well as challenges over deposits, it is an important point that DRS is already proving a costly policy for hospitality at a time when operators can least afford it and when businesses already achieve impressive rates of recycling.”

You can read the report in full here –

Category: News
Tags: Leon Thompson, Scottish Deposit Return Scheme, UKHospitality (Scotland)