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Product Stewardship Schemes

Product stewardship helps put responsibility for a product’s life-cycle and waste management on manufacturers, importers, retailers and users rather than communities, councils, neighbourhoods and nature.

The Government has declared six priority products for regulated product stewardship under the Waste Minimisation Act. This is part of a wider plan to reduce the amount of rubbish ending up in landfills or polluting the environment.

To find out what products are part of New Zealand's Stewardship scheme follow the link below.

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Container Return Scheme (CRS)

Container return schemes encourage consumers and businesses to return beverage containers (eg, bottles, cans etc) for recycling and/or re-use. They do this by including a refundable deposit (eg, 20-cents or more) in the price of purchase.

Consumers get their deposit refunded when they return their empty beverage container(s) to a designated scheme drop-off point for recycling.

Container return schemes help to increase recycling rates, reduce litter, and reduce emissions by decreasing the need for virgin packaging production. There are over 50 schemes operating or in the process of being established globally including in Australia, Canada, the USA and Europe. However, individual scheme design and outcomes can vary considerably.

Overseas evidence suggests that once implemented, container return schemes can reduce beverage container litter by 60 per cent or more.

Reflecting the growth in container return schemes internationally, a Government-funded New Zealand container return scheme investigation and co-design process was undertaken in 2020.

Follow the link below to find out more on how the CRS is progressing in New Zealand.

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Waste Levy

From 1 July 2021, the Government is progressively increasing and expanding the national waste disposal levy.

It uses the revenue gathered from the waste disposal levy for initiatives to reduce waste and encourage resource recovery (eg, composting and recycling).

Now more than ever there is a greater incentive to recycle and move towards recyclable materials, which may result in cost savings.

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