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Scottish Packaging Recovery Notes - What the feasibility study found

The proposed Scottish PRN (SPRN) model was developed through a series of stakeholder workshops.

To address some of the criticisms of the current UK system, and provide an audit trail to ensure that the material was collected in Scotland, the proposed SPRN model differs from the current UK PRN system in the following areas.

  • Collectors would be required to provide evidence to compliance schemes on both the quality and quantity of the packaging material they have collected. In return for the production of this evidence, they would receive a share of the overall SPRN value.
  • The introduction of a compliance SPRN, which would ensure that no compliance scheme or direct registrant can fail due to lack of collection of packaging material.       
  • A litter fee that is based on the unobligated packaging placed on the market.

The proposed model also allows for amendments to include targets to reduce the environmental impact and of individual polymer targets.

The study concluded that it would be feasible to introduce a SPRN system adapted from the existing PRN, but the benefits would only outweigh the costs over a 15- year period. If the SPRN was completely separate from the UK system and obligation was removed from the UK system, this would require a change in primary legislation which would potentially delay the implementation of the system.

It found that the best available option from a social, environmental and economic perspective would be to adopt Scottish reporting with a voluntary participation option. The voluntary participation would include setting Scottish-specific targets and voluntarily extending the scope of consumer information obligations to include responsibility for litter and a litter, fee-based, system.

It suggested that other formats of packaging would need to be targeted in addition to beverage containers, such as pots, tubs and trays. The principles of the SPRN system, or a Scottish reporting and voluntary system, could be extended to include further material streams, in particular other packaging formats or materials present within the consumer stream, that have low residual value and are currently disposed of in landfill, such as non-clothing textiles, footwear, mattresses and carpets.   

  • Scottish Packaging Recovery Notes - What the feasibility study found

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