Biffa to provide logistics for Scottish Deposit Return Scheme


Circularity Scotland has announced that Biffa will be the official logistics provider for the Scottish Deposit Return Scheme (DRS).

The not-for-profit administrator of the scheme said that it and Biffa had been collaborating for several months ahead DRS going live in Scotland in August 2023.


Circularity Scotland is also working with Biffa to explore the opportunity to build a PET recycling plant in Scotland to support the scheme and deliver further employment opportunities.

This follows the announcement in May that Circularity Scotland had raised £18 million from the Scottish National Investment Bank and Bank of Scotland to support the initial set-up of the scheme.

Biffa will take responsibility for collecting the billions of drinks bottles and cans from DRS return points across Scotland. It will also manage the bulking and counting centres that will process the material for recycling.

Circularity Scotland chief executive David Harris said: “The DRS scheme is a key part of Scotland’s move to a circular economy. It is one of the most significant environmental infrastructure projects ever introduced in the UK and the most comprehensive deposit return scheme anywhere in the world.

“As scheme administrator, Circularity Scotland is working at pace to ensure that the scheme runs effectively and efficiently, and at as low a cost as possible, from August 2023.

“Bringing on board Biffa as our logistics service provider is another landmark moment in this work and their unparalleled expertise in supporting large scale and complex recycling schemes will help us to achieve the aim of capturing and recycling at least 90% of drinks containers made from PET plastic, aluminium, steel or glass.”

Biffa chief executive Michael Topham said: “We’re delighted to have been appointed to provide logistics, sorting and counting services for Scotland’s landmark Deposit Return Scheme.

“This appointment is testament to the strength of Biffa’s reputation as a sustainable waste management provider to complex markets, our extensive capabilities and world leading recycling infrastructure.”