The one-way deposit system - how does it work?

Since 2003, consumers, beverage manufacturers and retailers have organised the issue and return of one-way beverage packaging in combination with a deposit. In this way, everyone involved makes an active contribution to environmental protection and promotes resource-saving material cycles.

Are you selling beverages on the German market?

Many consumers like to use disposable beverage packaging - not least because they can be easily disposed of using the Reverse Vending Machines. This is an important argument in favour of beverage manufacturers joining the DPG one-way deposit process and thus remaining on the safe side, legally speaking.

Do you collect packaging with a one-way deposit?

The system of the Deutsche Pfandsystem (DPG System) enables consumer-friendly return of empty packaging via vending machines, but also via manual withdrawal at the cash desk. The standards agreed within the DPG System promote uncomplicated reimbursement of deposits.

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The DPG Disposable Deposit System - A valuable contribution to the Circular Economy

 
Thanks to the organised deposit cycle, almost 100% of the PET plastic can be kept within a single cycle: After the return by the consumer, the emptied bottle goes through the Reverse Vending Machine to a high-quality recycling, where new bottles are formed from the shredded material. It’s also possible to recycle beverage cans made of aluminium or sheet metal. This means cycles remain closed.

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The Packaging Ordinance specifies in great detail which drink contents in which one-way drinks packaging require a compulsory deposit.

The contents of a packaging that make it subject to a compulsory deposit are in particular:

Beer and mixed drinks containing beer

  • Beer,
  • Mixtures of beer with cola or
    lemonade,
  • Alcohol-free beer,
  • Beer with syrup (such as "Berliner Weiße mit Schuss"),
  • Beer with another alcoholic drink (such as beer with vodka)
  • Flavoured beer (such as beer with tequila aroma);

Water

  • Mineral water carbonated or non-carbonated,
  • Spring water,
  • Healing water,
  • Table water and also other water, also with additives, e.g. aroma, caffeine, oxygen,
  • all other drinkable waters

Soft drinks carbonated and non-carbonated

  • Cola,
  • Lemonade,
  • Certain fruit-juice drinks,
  • Athletes' drinks,
  • So-called "energy drinks",
  • Ice-tea or coffee drinks, intended to be taken cold,
  • Bitter drinks and other drinks carbonated and non-carbonated,
    As of 1st April 2009: dietetic drinks with the exception of those intended solely for babies and small children.

Mixed alcoholic drinks

  • If these drinks are to be distributed in non-reusable packagings,  a deposit of at least 25 cents incl. value added tax must be charged.



Not subject to compulsory deposit

  • Packagings that have a full volume of less than 0.1 l or more than 3.0 l,
  • Ecologically beneficial packagings. These include:
    • drink packagings made of carton (block packs, gable packs, cylindrical packs)
    • drinks in polyethylene heat-sealed-bag packagings
    • standing foil bags, reusable packagings.
  • Reusable Packagings