Or, more to the point, how do you feel about taking plastic back once your customers have drunk their fill?

Mary Brass, who runs the delightfully-named Banana News in Clitheroe, Lancashire, came up with this hot topic. She wrote: “I’m writing to ask if any other small shopkeepers feel the same as I do about the proposed plastic bottle deposit/recycling scheme? Yes, I agree that plastic bottles are a huge problem for the environment, but yet again small businesses are being asked/forced to be at the forefront of an issue that the government should be tackling (underage drinking and smoking and so on).

“Our local authority already has a household recycling scheme in place. Surely all that is needed is suitable street bins to tackle the rest. They manage this on the continent.”

And she adds: “As for milk containers, glass is the answer. Investment in this would be well spent.”

The ACS is strongly opposed to a deposit return scheme (DRS) and the Scottish Grocers’ Federation is worried - now that Scotland has committed to some form of DRS - about what form that legislation might take. The NFRN, though, has come out in favour of a DRS, saying that modern deposit schemes work well in countries such as Norway with easy-to-use machines which even drive footfall to participating stores.

Discuss: Who thinks that the proposed deposit/recycle scheme is good? And who (don’t all shout at once) thinks it’s daft?

As Mary says, this really should be down to the local authorities.