Source: YouTube/Scottish Wholesale Association

Smith delivered the message during a presentation made to the Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform Committee at Holyrood

Scottish Wholesale Association CEO Colin Smith has called on the Scottish government to include a representative from the wholesale industry on the soon-to-be formed DRS administrator board.

As it stands, the government is proposing that representatives of retailers, manufacturers and producers are included on the board, which will head up the deposit return scheme administrator.

The message was delivered by Smith during a presentation made to the Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform Committee at Holyrood, where he outlined the “vital” role wholesalers will play in the proposed scheme.

“In our view, board membership (of the administrator) should reflect the parts of the supply chain that are obligated under DRS,” said Smith. “Wholesalers are critical to the implementation and success of DRS in Scotland and that vital role should be reflected with a position on the administrator board for the Scottish Wholesale Association as the lead body for Scotland’s wholesaling industry.”

Smith highlighted the fact that the wholesale association is the only pivotal part of the supply chain that is not compensated in any way under the current DRS proposals, either through a handling fee or as members of the administrator.

“Indeed, as the wheels of Scotland’s food and drink industry, the wholesale channel will deliver DRS-obligated products to Scotland’s 4,972 independent retailers and 39,000 restaurants, pubs and clubs and can therefore play a hugely important role in helping to identify fraud,” continued Smith.

Smith concluded his presentation by saying wholesalers in particular would be fundamental to the success of the scheme and this role should be recognised with formal SWA membership of the administrator.