Pret Pioneers its Own Bottle Deposit Scheme

By Gary Cutlack on at

Sandwich and crisps specialist Pret a Manger is leading the charge to reintroduce a bottle return deposit to the UK, with a small number of its stores about to test public appetite for bringing empty plastic water bottles back to the shop for recycling.

Your pay for doing this small act of environmental kindness? 10p. This means a small amount of outrage will be felt by queuing lunchers as 10p is added to the cost of buying a bottle of water, but then it's 10p they can have back later if they can be bothered lengthening tomorrow's transaction by returning the empty.

Don't people make themselves cups of tea in the office any more?

Pret's CEO Clive Schlee says he had this idea while walking around Hong Kong, with nature itself telling him what to do. Clive explains: "Everything about the hike was glorious. The ancient temples, the quiet fishing villages, the butterflies and papayas, and the golden sands of the beaches. There was one exception. The industrial quantity of plastic bottles on the shoreline was truly horrifying. It seemed like a message: do something about plastic bottles, Clive."

So Clive listened to the fairy gods and sketched out his idea on the flight home and here we are. A bottle deposit scheme for the next generation of people who don't know how to use a kettle or a tap, which is to be trialled in Brighton next month. [Pret via Metro]