Currys PC World’s home installation teams will offer to collect customers’ used household batteries for recycling when they deliver and install new appliances, as part of a battery recycling scheme.
The scheme, which will last throughout October, will see workers for Currys PC World offer a collection service for household batteries when they are installing a new appliance.
The initiative forms part of the #BringBackHeavyMetal campaign, launched by environmental charity Hubbub and compliance scheme Ecosurety (see letsrecycle.com story), and aims to test the impact of home battery collection on recycling rates.
A battery collection container will be used for customers to deposit batteries, which will then be returned back to regional depots for onward recycling.
In addition to the home collection scheme, all of Currys PC World’s 322 stores will feature special battery bins and “eye catching” signage to encourage customers to drop in their old batteries, in conjunction with 10% off promotion in-store on a selected range of new batteries.
Other retailers such as Morrisons, Sainsburys, Lidl and the Entertainer are also supporting the scheme.
Commenting on the recycling initiative, Hubbub CEO Trewin Restorick, said the scheme looks to make recycling batteries as easy as possible.
“Batteries are made of valuable heavy metals which can be reused, including lead, mercury, cadmium, zinc and manganese. These toxic contents can be hazardous if not disposed of properly, yet half of the respondents to a Hubbub poll admitted throwing batteries in the regular waste bin,” he explained.
Mr Restorick added: “We want to make it as easy as possible for people to recycle their used batteries, so this year we are particularly excited that Currys PC World have agreed to test home collection through their delivery and installation service.”
The campaign organisers added that while it is crucial to increase UK battery recycling rates, it is also important that there are sufficient recycling facilities in the UK.
Currently the UK exports the majority of its batteries for treatment overseas to countries such as Poland, France and Germany.
Matthew Manning, compliance and recycling operations manager for Currys PC World, said being the first retailer to test this method is “exciting” for the company.
“We always aim to ensure as many batteries as possible are handed in at Currys PC World for recycling and #BringBackHeavyMetal provides a great focal point for our work in this area,” he explained.
Mr Manning added: “To be the first retailer to test home battery collections in this way is really exciting for us and our staff are proud to be involved in the campaign. We look forward to playing a key role in making this year’s campaign a real success.”