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Dublin: 17°C Thursday 24 June 2021

Ireland's first reverse vending machine allows people to recycle plastic bottles in return for 10c vouchers

The machine is located in Carrickmacross, Co Monaghan.

Image: Jonathan Powe via PA Images

IRELAND’S FIRST REVERSE vending machine has started operating in Co Monaghan.

The vending machine allows people to bring their clean and empty plastic bottles for recycling, and then gives out vouchers worth 10 cent.

The machine, located in Carrickmacross, is programmed to recognise barcodes to stop non-recyclables getting mixed up with them.

Treasurer of the local tidy towns initiative Breda McGuigan told PA people are “hungry for solutions” when it comes to recycling their plastic waste.

“So many people have been asking us about the machine and when they can use it.

“We have had so many inquiries already this morning from other Tidy Towns organisations around the country about how they can get one in their town so we think it’s going to be a great success,” she said.

There are about 80,000 of these machines around the world, but this is the first one that will be operational in Ireland, she said.

“We had to supply the company who made the machine with barcodes of all the different types of plastic bottles that are on the Irish market so that it can learn the size and type of bottles it does not recognise to ensure the correct ones enter the system,” she said.

The plastic put into the machine will be processed locally into a plastic pellet, which will then be used to make new recyclable plastic packaging.

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