Packaging recovery – new report explores potential for a Scottish system

Today (Wednesday 20th May) sees the publication of the latest in a series of evidence-based reports commissioned by Zero Waste Scotland analysing options for systems to improve recycling and tackle litter.  

20 May 15

The Scottish Packaging Recovery Note (SPRN) Feasibility Study was commissioned by Zero Waste Scotland to assess the role that a Scotland-specific scheme of producer responsibility could play. It follows last week’s report investigating the options for a deposit-return scheme, together with a Call for Evidence from industry and other stakeholders on the role of a such a system.  

The study finds that a Scottish-specific system of producer responsibility around packaging, replacing the current UK-wide system, could be feasible and identifies the issues to investigate further.

The study:

  • Estimates that around 446, 000 tonnes of consumer and 500,000 tonnes of non-consumer packaging a year flow onto the Scottish market;
  • Explores the range of materials that could be included;
  • Explores the interaction with litter;
  • The regulatory requirements of such a system, along with costs and benefits.


Iain Gulland, Chief Executive, Zero Waste Scotland, said:

“This report on the potential of a Scottish Packaging Recovery Note system provides food for thought. It finds that a Scottish PRN system could have benefits around increasing recycling, accountability for producers, environmental performance, and cost benefits over the longer term, especially for local authorities.   However, there are a number of factors which would have to be considered for the introduction of this system, which would also have to work in tandem with other policies.

“Zero Waste Scotland is focussed on facilitating robust evidence gathering from the broadest possible range of stakeholders around systemic changes that could boost recycling and tackle litter.” 

For media enquiries contact:

Claire Munro, PR Manager
t: 01786 239791
m: 07702976594

Notes For Editors

Editor’s Notes

  • The full report, Scottish Packaging Recovery Note (SPRN) Feasibility Study , is available at:
  • The report on Deposit Return and Call for Evidence are available at
  • Zero Waste Scotland is funded by the Scottish Government to support the delivery of its Zero Waste Plan and other low carbon and resource efficiency policy priorities.
  • Zero Waste Scotland is helping Scotland to become more efficient in its use of resources. As a facilitator and enabler of change, we help to reduce waste, increase energy efficiency and promote responsible water use – all as part of a journey towards a low-carbon, sustainable economy.
  • Zero Waste Scotland has six key delivery priorities for 2014-15. These are: Supporting a circular economy; Harnessing the value of recycling; Transforming attitudes to food waste; Reducing the impacts of litter; Implementing resource efficiency savings; Accelerating the development of low carbon heat.
Close Search

Search form