As of 01.02.2022, Latvia has joined the list of countries where a deposit system has been introduced for certain types of beverage packaging.
Within framework of this system, when purchasing beverages in marked packaging, the buyer pays a small so-called “deposit”, which is later repaid when handing over the empty packaging at the specialized reception points.
The purpose of the deposit system is to supplement and improve waste management in Latvia and to stimulate the recycling of frequently purchased and discarded types of packaging.
All packaging participating in the deposit system have a special deposit mark:
Such packaging may be placed in waste sorting containers.
More detailed information on packaging included in the system can be found in the section "What to hand over?" on the Latvian deposit system website.
An empty deposit packaging can be handed over in approximately 1400 deposit points throughout Latvia:
If you did not find a vending machine in or near the store, ask at the checkout if it is possible to return the packaging to the shop assistant.
The map with the location of the deposit packaging acceptance points can be found in the section "Where to hand over?" on the deposit system website.
We are already accustomed to flattening the plastic packaging when sorting and throwing it in containers to save space.
On the other hand, within framework of the deposit system, whole, undamaged containers with minimal deformation and easy-to-read information on the label must be handed over.
Reverse vending machines accept bottles with or without caps, but it is recommended to return bottles with caps:
Only packaging with the correct labelling may be handed over to the deposit system – the mark of the Latvian deposit system:
The amount of the deposit fee in the amount of 10 cents per bottle is set forth by the Regulations of the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Latvia No. 519 "Regulations for the Operation of the Deposit Syste". Upon handing of the deposit packaging at the point of acceptance, the deposit fee is returned in the form of a coupon for the purchase of goods in the respective store.
During the transition period ending on 31.07.2022, stores are allowed to sell goods in packaging with and without a deposit mark at the same time. However, packaging without a deposit mark cannot be handed over within the deposit system.