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Woolworths announced as first NSW CDS retail partner

Woolworths announced as first NSW CDS retail partner

TOMRA Cleanaway has announced that Woolworths will be its first retail refund partner when the NSW CDS program launches on December 1, 2017.  

Under the CDS, consumers will be able to return eligible beverage containers for recycling in exchange for a 10 cent refund.

The arrangement with Woolworths will provide up to 180 collection points in metro and regional areas of NSW.

Reverse Vending Machine (RVM) kiosks will be located across the state for the return of eligible containers. Consumers will be able to choose to donate their refund directly to selected charities or receive the refund via electronic payment to their registered account.

Customers can also use a credit voucher issued by the RVM towards their shopping at Woolworths or redeem for cash in Woolworths supermarkets across NSW.

Markus Fraval, Director, Strategy & Business Development, TOMRA Collection said: “We are pleased to have the state's largest retailer, Woolworths on board as the first partner to be announced to provide redemption locations for residents to receive their refund.

“This will help support the delivery of the scheme in time for the December 1 launch. It will also provide customers with convenient RVM locations where they can drop off their containers and then redeem their vouchers at a nearby Woolworths supermarket.”

Steve Greentree, Managing Director, Woolworths FoodCo, said; “As one of Australia’s largest retailers we are committed to supporting initiatives that help improve and protect the environment.

“The agreement with TOMRA Cleanaway will ensure consumers have the option to support this NSW State Government sustainability initiative, with convenient locations to return their containers and claim their refund.”

Impact on independent liquor retailers

Retails expressed major concerns about the NSW Container Deposit Scheme at a Liquor Stores Association NSW panel discussion last month.

The panel featured Alex Young, Director Community & Behaviour Change, NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA); Peter Bruce, CEO, Exchange for Change; and Ken Donley, CEO, TOMRA Cleanaway taking questions from the room.

Attendees heard first-hand about the costs, obligations, impacts and potential opportunities for liquor retailers, suppliers, the broader industry and consumers.

When TOMRA Cleanaway announced that it was in final stage talks with a major retailer to become an official collection point for container returns, independent retailers voiced concerns about the anti-competitive nature of the agreement, with consumers who collect the 10c from the retailer likely to spend it there also.

Attendees also felt the government had not consulted with the industry thoroughly enough before bringing in the scheme. 

ALDI supports NSW CDS

ALDI has revealed it will also be a collection point for the NSW CDS scheme.

“We are proud to be participating in the NSW Government’s Return and Earn Container Deposit Scheme (CDS)," ALDI said in a statement. "As part of the scheme, ALDI customers will be able to obtain a 10c refund on eligible containers purchased in NSW stores.

“We are committed to supporting initiatives such as the CDS and look forward to participating in the largest litter reduction initiative in NSW."

ALDI has yet to reveal full details of how it's involvement in the program will be managed.