The company has carried out the installation in all Tesco Express, Super and Extra stores, for customers to easily engage in the nationwide scheme, which will see a refundable deposit added to plastic bottles and aluminium or steel cans of 150ml to 3L.
Customers can claim the deposit back by returning the empty and undamaged containers either to the checkout or a reverse vending machine.
Sustainability is a key concern for Irish consumers, second only to price.
Darin Horner, county operations manager with Tesco Ireland, acknowledged this, saying, “[The scheme] will require a significant change in consumer behaviour.”
Machine trials took place in the Drogheda and Malahide Tesco stores from June to September, and, following positive feedback, the installation was carried out across all stores.
The organisation hopes that ease of use with the machines will encourage participation from customers.
During the trial, there were over 115,000 returns, with an average of 14 items returned per customer visit.
The machines were cleaned daily, which will continue after 1 February, and the average time spent at the machine was 71 seconds.
Read More: The Deposit Return Scheme Made Easy
The Deposit Return Scheme
As part of the DRS, containers with the Re-Turn logo that are in their original shape with the bar code visible can be returned.
The deposit – 15c for containers of 150ml to 500ml, and 25c for containers over 500ml up to 3L – can be claimed from the returning store, or the amount can be set against shopping from that store.
Once returned, the deposit must be set against shopping at the returning store and cannot be transferred to a different store.
Speaking about the company’s investment in the scheme, the chief operations officer of Tesco Ireland, Natasha Adams, said, “We’re hugely committed to playing our part in building a more sustainable world. We’ve invested €15 million in indoor machines for all our stores, which we hope will help make the transition easier for customers.”