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Re-turn publishes details of retailer and producer handling fees

Ireland’s Deposit Return Scheme, Re-turn, today published details of retailer handling fees and producer fees, for retailers and producers involved in the new national Deposit Return Scheme.

Re-turn has engaged with retailers and producers, including representative bodies, to update them on all aspects of the Deposit Return Scheme including fee structures, international bar code usage for producers and exemptions from the scheme.

The regulations establishing the Deposit Return Scheme Regulations 2021 were signed by the Minister for the Environment in November 2021. Deposit return is an integral part of the Waste Action Plan for a Circular Economy (published in September 2020), which shifts the focus away from waste disposal and looks instead to preserve resources by creating a circular economy. All producers and retailers are legally obliged to register with Re-turn. Registration is open at

Retailer handling fees

  • All retailers who operate return points and take back Deposit Return Scheme ‘in scope’ containers from consumers, will be paid the following handling fees:
    • Manual Collection: €0.026 per container
    • Automatic Collection (RVM): €0.022 per container
    • The price is per unit regardless of material

Retailers may choose to operate a manual take back service or use automatic take back, using a Reverse Vending Machine (RVM). Small retailers opting to install an automatic take back point may be eligible for financial support of up to €6,000 and the payment is spread across three years, provided the retailer meets certain criteria as specified.

The retailer handling fees were calculated with input from a variety of sources including industry representative bodies, best practice in European DRS schemes, and accepted 3rd party indices (floor space, construction costs etc.). The methodology used and the resulting calculated fees have been verified by independent financial consultants, Mazars.

Retailer exemptions

Retailers operating from a premises of 150 sqm and under may apply for an exemption from providing a take back service. However, all retailers must still register with the Deposit Return Scheme, Re-turn. To qualify, retailers with premises of 150 sqm and under, must provide relevant evidence of store size, in addition to meeting other criteria as defined by Re-turn.

The following exemption sectors are currently being considered and will be confirmed in March 2023:

  • ‘On the go’ food retailers
  • Off licenses
  • Hospitality sector: Hotels, restaurants and pubs
  • Retail Parks and vending machine operators

Producer fees

The producer fees will vary for different materials but will be consistent, regardless of the size of the container.

National Barcode Material

  • Aluminium / Steel – €0.0125 per container
  • PET Plastic Bottles – €0.02 per container.

Producer fees will be reviewed annually. The first review will be in Q1, 2025.

National barcodes

Deposit Return Scheme ‘in scope’ beverage containers should be sold or supplied with a new barcode that is unique to the Republic of Ireland (national barcode).

The new national barcode protects the scheme from cross border fraud as barcodes from outside the state are not registered with the scheme.

The national deposit logo is mandated to confirm container compliance and ensure correct identification by consumers and retailers operating manual collection.

There is no charge for producers using the new national barcode.

International barcodes

Producers who opt to use an international barcode will be subject to a surcharge of €0.0312 per container and these surcharges will be reviewed annually in line with fraud risk. Smaller producers placing less than 10 million containers on the market in total, will incur a lower surcharge of €0.0135 per container, but must apply for the reduced surcharge before placing on market.

Product registration

All producers must register their products with Re-turn and product registration takes place from 1 August and closes on 31 October, 2023.

Any producers registering products, or making changes to existing products from 1 November, 2023 will incur a fee of €100.

For full details of producer fees, please visit





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