The return of deposit-subjected bottles in Estonia has decreased since 2016, when cross-border trade with Latvia began to significantly pick up.
According to Eesti Pandipakend CEO Kaupo Kraba, the return of deposit-subjected bottles has fallen 3-4% in the first five months of 2018 alone, down 5% on year, but the actual decline is even higher, writes daily Postimees (link in Estonian).
Saku Brewery CEO Jaan Härms and A. le Coq CEO Tarmo Noop estimate that nearly 100 million cans will be brought across the border from Latvia to Estonia this year, or approximately 300,000 cans per day, none of which are recognized by Estonian bottle return machines.
As Latvian bottles are not registered as returnable in Estonia, cans and bottles brought to Estonia from Latvia are counted by bottle return machines as rubbish, and thus the only option those purchasing such goods from Latvia have is to recycle them. A significant portion of these bottles, however, never make it to recycling.
Editor: Aili Vahtla