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16th December 2022

Choice of good beer still at risk from Scotland’s Deposit Return Scheme: CAMRA

Commenting on the publication today (15th December) of a letter from Circular Economy Minister Lorna Slater MSP to the Scottish Parliament’s Net Zero, Energy and Transport Committee about updates to the planned Deposit Return Scheme CAMRA Scotland’s Director Stuart McMahon said:

“The news today from the Minister that the likes of small breweries and bottle shops selling beer online won’t have to offer a takeback service to collect empty cans and bottles from people’s homes is welcome news and a sensible step.

“However, CAMRA still fears that the Deposit Return Scheme risks severely limiting the choice available for consumers as Scotland’s small, local and independent breweries and cider makers face extra burdens to be part of the scheme, threatening their viability at a time of rising costs, rocketing energy bills and customers tightening their belts.

“At the same time, the risk is that brewers and cider makers from elsewhere in these islands will simply stop selling cans and bottles in Scotland to avoid the excessive costs and bureaucracy the Deposit Return Scheme places on small producers compared to the multinational brewing giants.

“If consumers in Scotland are to continue to have a diverse range of products, then the Scottish Government needs to commit to further exemptions and grace periods if smaller brewing businesses – and consumer choice – are to survive and thrive in the months and years to come.”


Notes to editors:

The Scottish Government’s Gateway Review into the Deposit Return Scheme is available here: The Deposit Return Scheme: Gateway Review Final Report (

This is accompanied by the publication of:

About CAMRA:  

CAMRA, the Campaign for Real Ale, is a not-for-profit consumer group with over 160,000 members that has been operating since 1971. Our vision is to have quality real ale and thriving pubs in every community.

Press release from CAMRA. Media Contact:

CAMRA Press Office
01727 337863