Around a decade ago....Germany passed regulations that required all soda cans and bottles (glass and plastic) to be re-usable. This meant a 'pfund' situation where you paid a deposit and got the money back later at some gas station, grocery, or drink shop. Generally, most Germans all grumbled about this regulation, accepted it, and continued on.
Over the past year....there's this new expression that has come about in German society....one-way drinks. It's basically a container that cannot be reused. The chief company pushing the product? Coca-Cola.
Coke looked over the regulations and it plainly says that all containers must be in a recyclable container....but it's less stringent that it must be the type collected with a pfund (deposit).
Naturally, in the last few weeks....the folks who press hard on recycling believe that Coke is not playing by the rules and have been suggesting additional layers of rules to prevent this avoidance. Yeah, you read it right....obeying the current rules and thus skipping the pfund gimmick.....so more rules need to be written.
The Federal Environmental Ministry has so far denied any plans exist and aren't talking about making such rules.
The environmentalists are suggesting a standard pfund of 20-cents for all one-way containers.....so you'd have to return a non-reusable container.....for simple waste collection. As stupid as it sounds.....it's the only way to make this work the environmental way.
The comeback used in this argument is that precious resources are often used in bottle/can production.....so re-use simply makes sense.
A month or two ago, I sat and watched a news piece from the state-run network HR, which oddly covered the re-used plastic bottles for sodas. The science guy got to some point where he kinda admitted degradation occurring with the plastic bottles after X number of uses. Yeah, a breakdown of plastics. Bad for humans? He didn't get to the point of this......or it was removed from the discussion.
Eventually, I expect some science guys to show up and note that bottles are the only safe item for re-use, and we are contaminating society with this stupid recycling pfund/deposit gimmick. But don't worry....this is probably another decade away from Germans realizing it and changing the rules back to the old system.
As for Coke and their one-way cans/containers? Don't worry.....various shops and distributors are already buying sodas made outside of Germany and just avoiding the government's gimmick. It might not be obvious or legal.....but it's going on already. Coke is simply playing the game legally.