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7th April 2022

Call for Evidence – Scottish Cross-Party Group on Beer and Pubs Inquiry into the Scottish Deposit Return Scheme

The Cross-Party Group on Beer and Pubs is launching an inquiry into the Scottish Deposit Return Scheme and would welcome written evidence from businesses, individuals and organisations about its impact.

The scheme is due to go live in August 2023, changing the way consumers buy and recycle bottles and cans and aiming to achieve at least 90% collection rates by 2024. The Group is interested to explore what this means for Scotland’s beer and pubs sector. In particular, the inquiry would like to learn about:

  • the impact of the scheme on brewers, pubs, consumers and the environment,
  • the preparedness of the sector to meet the go live date next year,
  • the steps that need to be taken in the next 12 months to prepare for a successful launch.

Announcing the inquiry, Convenor of the Cross-Party Group, Craig Hoy MSP said: “Scotland is planning on introducing one of the most environmentally ambitious Deposit Return Schemes yet, involving tens of thousands of producers and retailers, all in 16 months’ time.  While welcoming its ambitions, we’re aware that significant changes will need to be made – to systems, to practices and to behaviour – that may come at a cost. For Scotland’s brewing and pubs sector in particular, this timing may be problematic as they’re already facing a wall of inflationary and energy related pressures while fighting back from Covid. We’re holding this inquiry to help us understand what needs to happen to make the scheme a success for all”

Anyone wishing to submit written evidence should email  by Friday 7th May making clear any evidence they wish to keep confidential.  The Group intends to hold an oral session in May for a panel of MSPs to hear from expert witnesses, before publishing a short report in June with recommendations for action.


The Cross-Party Beer and Pubs Group’s purpose is to celebrate, recognise and enhance the contribution the brewing and pub-related hospitality industry plays in Scotland. It is an approved Cross-Party Group, registered with the Scottish Parliament’s Standards, Procedures and Public Appointments Committee.

Cross-Party Groups are not formal parliamentary committees but may consider any matter which falls within their remit.

Press release from The Cross-Party Group on Beer and Pubs

For further information please contact: Paul Hegarty  or 01543 483 561