Sir, Your article on deposit return (‘Do we have the bottle for a deposit return scheme?’ 16 September, p16) was very well balanced. However, Zero Waste Scotland has now provided more up-to-date figures.
The startup costs for retailers in Scotland will be over £40m - where this money will come from has not been addressed by Zero Waste Scotland or the Scottish government. Retailers are neither the producers nor the polluters but are being asked to tidy up the mess. But no strong evidence has been presented to demonstrate that a deposit system will be more effective than the well-developed at-home recycling services Scotland currently has.
Recycling rates in Scotland for plastic and glass are currently at about 70% but this has been downplayed to strengthen the case for deposits. Additionally, it makes absolutely no economic or practical sense for Scotland to have a ‘dual system’ of recycling. The option of at-home recycling will have to be actively taken away to ensure sufficient throughput into the new deposit system.
The Scottish government has abandoned any pretence at evidence-based policy. This is actually an old-fashioned, costly and disruptive system to adopt.
Pete Cheema, chief executive, Scottish Grocers Federation
Brands must shout out
Sir, With food inflation showing no signs of slowing, it’s no surprise supermarket own-label ranges are thriving and branded products are struggling to compete. Brands need to capitalise on their heritage and remind shoppers of what makes them different. With POPAI arguing that 82% of purchase decisions are made in stores, brands should be leveraging shopper marketing investment to communicate these messages. Brands using shopper investment as a tool in commercial conversations are seeing their ranges grow in stores by proving their investment is helping to drive the category, which is what retailers want. Being smart with media choices means brands can also deliver a positive ROI.
Matt Lee, MD, shopper media agency Capture
How’s your Greek?
Sir, Just to clarify ‘Tyrrells TV ad debut’ (9 September, p43): back in 2008/9 Tyrrells Chips launched a TV campaign in Greece to support our launch in Veropoulos Stores. The ad was hugely successful in Greece. You can see it on YouTube (‘Tyrrells’ Veropoulos ad’), but clearly only people fluent in Greek will understand it.
Les Sayers, former CEO, Tyrrells Potato Chips