During the four-week trial, householders will be provided with a set of bottles tagged by Polytag


Digital DRS for plastic bottles will be trialled in Conwy county. (Credit: Welsh Government)

The Welsh Government is planning to pilot a new deposit return scheme (DRS) for plastic bottles in Colwyn Heights, Conwy to help the country achieve a zero-waste, circular economy.

The trial will be conducted in partnership with Polytag, Conwy County Borough Council and Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP).

During the four-week trial, which is slated to commence in the spring, householders will be provided with a set of bottles tagged by Polytag.

The bottles can be scanned by Conwy County Borough Council’s household waste recycling team when placing in their recycling containers and upon collection.

Polytag founder and chief technology officer Phil Sutton said: “We’re delighted that Polytag’s technology has been recognised by a national government as a solution to improve recycling rates exponentially.”

Upon scanning, householders can earn a digital token worth 20p for each bottle for donation in order to raise funds for Ysgol Pen y Bryn, the local primary school.

Polytag in partnership with Ecosurety has proven the technology’s success after a trial in the village of Greasby on the Wirral. The test revealed that 91% of tagged packaging was successfully recycled.

Wales Environment, Energy and Rural Affairs Minister Lesley Griffiths said: “Measures such as these will allow a more flexible system for consumers than having to return items such as bottles or containers themselves, and will link in well with existing infrastructure already in place at the household recycling collection systems run by local authorities.

“By taking advantage of new technologies, we can move closer on our route to a circular economy – and I look forward to seeing the results of the trial once it has taken place.”

Earlier this year, the Welsh government launched a consultation into proposed new rules to lessen the impact of single-use plastic.

It plans to ban single-use plastic stirrers, straws and cotton buds, effective from the first half of 2021.