It would be an understatement to say 2020 has been anything other than turbulent for businesses across the UK, and while progress is being made in combating the coronavirus, 2021 is still going to be a hugely challenging year for retailers. As well as hopes of a recovery period in terms of sales, there are regulatory changes which will impact retailers from the start of the year.
Phased closure of the DTS
Over the last 12 months we have hosted various webinars and written blogs around the changes to the Distributor Take back Scheme (DTS) and have tried to make as many affected businesses aware of the impending changes as possible. Writing this now with just over a month until the changes take effect, it’s key that affected retailers are prepared for offering in store takeback on 1 January 2021.
In short, these affected businesses will need to be prepared to offer like for like takeback of any old electrical goods when selling new ones. They will also have requirements on communicating the take back options available to the consumer and making sure they keep a record of the number of units that get returned, making sure to keep those records for a minimum of four years.
Could take back aide physical retail sales?
Whilst having to receive post-consumer waste back into retail premises is not ideal for many businesses, there are some potential positive outcomes of doing this. ADEPTs excellent surveys of the impact of COVID-19 on local authorities throughout this year have shown that many kerbside collections and Household Waste Recycling Centres are still not fully back to pre-pandemic service levels. This therefore means consumers who are wanting to recycle electrical items correctly may feel more inclined to go to a store they know will take their old goods off their hands if they buy the replacement from them.
The new emphasis on retailers to provide these take back routes for consumers will also mean there will be thousands more places items can be taken for recycling, the hope being that once the system is bedded in and communicated effectively, there could be a boost to the WEEE recycling figures.
What has Valpak been doing to help members?
To help businesses with the storage and collection requirements around take back we have launched our WEEEbox service, where we can supply boxes to premises for the safe storage and transport of take back material. We have more information on that service here.
We are also using our online Waste Tracking platform to help businesses track the uptake in take back across their business. The system allows us to collate all the collection and weight data in one place and then break the data down to compare uptake; however, the customer wants to see it so via region or store size, for example.
We’re hosting one final webinar around these changes in early December and you can sign up to this here . We’ll go through the requirements in detail and also touch on the further support Valpak can offer in terms of the waste management solution.
If you would like any help or to discuss any of the above further please contact us at email@example.com