Irn-Bru Makers To Scrap Bottle Refund

19 August 2015, 10:19 | Updated: 19 August 2015, 12:07

The makers of IRN-BRU has announced they're getting rid of the 30pence payback for glass bottles.

A.G Barr say the returns will stop at the end of the year.

Bosses have announced an investment of £5million in its Cumbernauld facility with the installation of new, high-speed filling capability for its glass bottle range.

The planned investment means the company will no longer have the infrastructure to handle returned bottles.  

Barr has seen a significant reduction in the number of bottles being returned in recent years as consumers increasingly choose the convenience of recycling at home.  

Barr saw 90% of its bottles returned in the early 90s, but now only half of bottles are being returned.

Jonathan Kemp, Barr's Commercial Director, said: "We know how much our consumers love the taste of their favourite soft drink flavours in our iconic 750ml glass bottles. This significant investment allows us to continue to offer our consumers their favourite products in glass, well into the future.

"With improved kerbside recycling, only one in two of our bottles are now being returned, meaning that the process of handling returned bottles has become uneconomic.  We will continue to offer the same quality products in the 750ml bottle for the long-term, but the bottle will no longer be returnable."

This investment will replace Barr's current glass line, which is almost 20 years old, with faster more efficient glass filling capability, and will see the energy-hungry returnable glass bottle washing equipment decommissioned.

Barr will continue to accept bottles until the 31st December 2015 and consumers can continue to return their bottles to retailers until this date.  From the 1st January 2016 consumers should recycle their bottles through their household recycling scheme or using 'on-the-go' public recycling facilities.  

Kemp comments: "From the beginning of October, information on the change will be carried on the bottle label and we will work with retailers to display materials in their premises to ensure our consumers understand what is planned.

"This exciting investment in the future of our glass filling capability will ensure that our loyal glass bottle fans can continue to enjoy their favourite soft drinks, exactly as they are, for many years to come."