Recycler information

TRUST is a way for recyclers to prove their professionalism.

By certifying as a TRUST Merchant, companies will have the benefit of being able to work with Charities which have committed to only work with TRUST certified merchants. The Charities which have signed up to this are listed on the Charity Signatory section of the website:

The Charity Retail Sector have committed to help clean up the industry and ensure all merchants conform to the following 5 key areas:

  1. Professional and Business: Checking that everything the business does is compliant with the law and transparent
  2. Health and Safety: Ensuring that sound policies exist to prevent accidents and take appropriate action to protect staff when incidents occur
  3. Working Conditions: Requiring that all workers are treated properly and in full accordance with their rights
  4. Environment:  Promoting the best sustainability and environmental standards
  5. Transport: Compliance with industry regulations with regard to: vehicle maintenance and drivers requirements, ensuring a safer transport environment

The process of being certified can take several months but all starts with you making contact with the TRUST Administrator and expressing your interest.

The overall cost of an application for Trust Certification is £2,800.00 plus VAT. This price relates to operational sites in mainland Britain and additional charges may apply for sites in Northern Ireland or islands. The charge is split into 2 stages, 50% payable at each stage. Certification is for 2 years which equates to £1,400.00 plus VAT per year.

Stage 1

After making contact the Administrator will send you an application form and a copy of the TRUST Code of Practice which needs to be signed and returned before the first invoice can be raised.

When payment has been received, the application form can be returned with all the requested documents for the initial review of the business.

Stage 2

On passing stage 1 of the process, you will be invoiced for the balance of the cost and then an onsite audit will be arranged.

Please note that if you have more than one operational site additional audits may be necessary, which will be charged at a discounted rate.

After the onsite audit has taken place, the findings from the audit will be presented to the TRUST Steering Group for a final decision if TRUST Certification will be awarded.

The decision of the TRUST Steering Group will be passed on as soon as possible. For further information and to request your application form and Code of Practice, please contact: info@trustmerchants.org.uk or Contact us:

Frequently Asked Questions:

Q: We’re a very small/micro company/clothes bank collector- will we still need to be audited?

A: Yes, we’re looking for all recyclers to be audited and attaining the TRUST Standard. Note that some questions in the audit may not be applicable for very small companies.

Q: Will the audit for TRUST replace separate audits conducted by individual charities?

A: The intention is that TRUST will remove the need for charities to undertake their own individual audits.

Q: Will I get a refund if I decide to cancel my application?

A: The initial payment at stage 1 is non refundable, but there maybe a partial refund at Stage 2 if cancellation is made prior to the audit subject to any cost already incurred, if under 10 days before audit booked.

Q: If I fail the TRUST Certification can I appeal the decision?

A: Yes there is an appeals process, for the process details please click here

Q: Who carries out the audits?

A: Stage 1 application details are checked by the TRUST Administrator who is employed by TRUST FORUM, therefore, is not directly linked to any party of the FORUM. Stage 2 is carried out by a independent auditing company

Q: Will my company details/strategies be shared with members of the Forum?

A: No, the Administrator ensures all sensitive information is secure; only results from the audit on areas of concern are discussed.

Q: What if the charity I work with do not want to sign up to be a TRUST signatory?

A: All charities have the right to decide if they want to sign up; it is highly recommended by the CRA that they only use TRUST certified merchants. We suggest you discuss this with them and if they have any questions refer them to the TRUST Forum via the TRUST Administrator at info@trustmerchant.org.uk or contact us: