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What is the PaintWise levy?

In PaintWise service areas, Resene charges a PaintWise levy on retail paint purchases of 15c per litre.

The Resene PaintWise service is a paint and paint recovery service that you can return all paints and all paint containers to. Most customers end up with some unwanted paint or paint packaging in their garages. Even if you use up all the paint, the container can still be returned for recycling. Returns to the Resene PaintWise service are donated to community groups, packaging is recycled, solventborne paint is sent to solvent recovery and other paint is used for projects such as covering graffiti.

The PaintWise levies collected are paid direct to the non profit trust The Resene Foundation. No levies are retained by Resene Paints Ltd. The service is not profitable, so Resene Paints Ltd provides monthly financial contributions to help fund the programme. The programme could be self funding if higher levies were charged however Resene believes that the cost of taking care of paint wastes should be shared between the user of the paint and the paint supplier.

The levy is included as a separate charge so that customers can see what is being paid to The Resene Foundation for the PaintWise service. Resene could have included it in the price but we wanted to be transparent with the levy and what it is being used for. The levy is only charged in areas where the PaintWise service is operating and it is charged as a set rate per litre. Resene approached the Commerce Commission some time ago to confirm that the levy could be charged transparently and they have confirmed that it is legal to do so.

The NZ Government is encouraging NZ businesses to reduce waste and find ways to run product stewardship programmes, such as the Resene PaintWise programme. As time progresses it is likely that other companies will continue down the same path as Resene. The Ministry for the Environment and over thirty councils around New Zealand support the PaintWise service as most have found dealing with paint wastes a nuisance. In some regions of New Zealand, councils will not accept paint or paint packaging at their hazmobile and landfill services and instead recommend that paint and paint packaging be returned to the Resene PaintWise service as that is a better option for the environment.

Since the Resene PaintWise service started, hundreds of thousands of litres of paint have been diverted to community groups and vast amounts of packaging have been recycled. Without the Resene PaintWise service this would have gone to landfill or continued to deteriorate in sheds and garages.

Resene believes that the significant financial contributions it makes each month to the PaintWise service together with the small customer levies are a positive investment to divert paint wastes from landfill, preserve the environment for future generations and to make thousands of litres of paint available to community groups. The PaintWise service accepts all brands of paints, with a small charge on non Resene paints.

For more information on PaintWise, please see the Resene PaintWise brochure or visit

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