#Reuse, #Deposit , #Definition
💭 The context Both terms tend to confuse the general public and muddy the waters in a context where we have to do everything we can to effectively reduce the amount of single-use packaging.
❓ So, why do the words we use matter? The semantics used are of paramount importance because the notion of “deposit” is very present in the public debate, while referring to mechanisms and interpretations that vary from one stakeholder to another. In the case of reuse, this concept is defined in several statutory or normative texts, at French and European levels. But as the Conseil National de l'Emballage points out in its “Panorama du réemploi” published in 2016, “these definitions are, unfortunately, not homogeneous from one text to another, or even contradictory.”
Let’s clarify the facts…
📈 According to Reloop Platform, on their “Global Deposit Book” published in 2020, “the last decade has witnessed an explosive growth of Deposit Return Systems (DRS) across the globe”. 📉 But this trend for Deposit Return Systems worldwide doesn’t mean that reuse models will be rising as well. There is absolutely no guarantee that a packaging included in a Deposit Return System, once collected, will be reused. The example of Germany epitomizes it well, where the deposit on single-use bottles has led to a significant decrease in the share of reusable bottles, and therefore less reuse.
👉🏼 Thus… deposit is in no case synonymous with reuse! We need to be precise, when we talk about Deposit Return Systems (DRS), if the packaging will be recycled or reused. In a context where European governments want to put in place legislation on reuse, recycling and deposit, let’s keep in mind that the issues of packaging management are complex, and will be even more so if we use vague terms.