Recycling Lives develops scrap metal top-up card

An example of Recycling Lives' top-up card

In light of new cashless scrap metal trading laws to be put in place in December, Preston-based recycling company, Recycling Lives, has come up with a solution to the cash-for-scrap ban by offering customers a top-up trade card for transactions.

New legislation, outlined in a document released by the Home Office this October, will ban cash transactions for scrap metal with the aim of reducing metal theft by making it much more difficult for metal thieves to profit from the industry. Those caught dealing metal illegally will also be subject to considerably higher fines than are currently in place.

Recycling Lives has announced that it now hopes to offset the inconvenience to its customers, which could be caused by changes in legislation, by introducing an electric top-up card for payments in exchange for scrap metal. Customers will be able to use the card for cash withdrawals via cash-points, or for other payments in the same way as a debit card.

Announcing the plans for the new payment system, a spokesperson for Recycling Lives said: "While Recycling Lives recognises the difficulties connected to the new cash ban, the company is focusing its efforts on finding new ways to keep business running at full speed; as the introduction of cashless transactions looms, we are reassessing our technology, procedures, and staff training. Although we, like every other scrap trader in the UK, will no longer be able to offer customers the ease of cash payments, we are doing our best to deliver the top quality customer service that our customers have come to expect over the years.

“The issue of scrap metal theft is a serious one. And, while Recycling Lives may have preferred to see a different approach to tackling scrap metal theft, we are doing our best to support the new measures that the government has introduced.”

The recycling company has also held talks with the Home Office to ensure that the top-up card scheme is in line with the new legislation, and the local police service is also on board.

David Brown, Temporary Geographic Inspector at Fulwood Police, commented: “Lancashire Police has an excellent, long-standing relationship with Recycling Lives. The company is leading the way when it comes to tackling scrap metal theft, and has been especially pro-active with the introduction of the ID verification systems on its sites, designed to ease the transition into cashless transactions.

“During Operation Tornado, which took place this summer, Recycling Lives was identified as one of the best recycling firms in the country; colleagues on the operation were astounded by just how seriously the company is taking the problem of scrap meal theft, and how closely they’re working with the local police service to develop a solution.

“Here at the Neighbourhood Policing Team, we fully support and endorse the way that Recycling Lives is embracing the new legislation, and we look forward to continuing our positive relationship with the company.”

Other recycling companies have also been coming up with ways to tackle the new cashless trading legislation, including Sims Metal Management who are giving customers the option to receive bank transfers or cheques in exchange for scrap metal.