Consultation outcome

Introduction of a deposit return scheme in England, Wales and Northern Ireland

This was published under the 2019 to 2022 Johnson Conservative government

Applies to England, Northern Ireland and Wales

This consultation has concluded

Read the full outcome

Detail of outcome

The deposit return scheme has received strong support as outlined in the government response. Defra will work with industry, Welsh Government, and the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs in Northern Ireland, to now set up the scheme. The expected start date for the scheme is 1 October 2025.

Feedback received

Consultation response analysis

Request an accessible format.
If you use assistive technology (such as a screen reader) and need a version of this document in a more accessible format, please email Please tell us what format you need. It will help us if you say what assistive technology you use.

Detail of feedback received

We received 2,590 responses to this consultation.

Original consultation


Seeking views on our plans to introduce a deposit return scheme for drinks containers.

This consultation was held on another website.

This consultation ran from

Consultation description

We want to know what you think about our proposals to introduce a deposit return scheme for drinks containers in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

By creating a deposit return scheme, we want to increase the recycling rate of drinks containers and reduce littering. Introducing such a scheme will help change consumer behaviour to encourage higher levels of drinks container recycling.

We need your views on:

  • how a deposit return scheme will operate
  • scheme scope and design
  • implementation timelines
  • scheme enforcement

Updates to this page

Published 24 March 2021
Last updated 20 January 2023 + show all updates
  1. Added consultation response analysis and government response in English and Welsh.

  2. Added detail of feedback received.

  3. First published.

Sign up for emails or print this page