The treasurer of Carrickmacross Tidy Towns says she hopes Ireland's first reverse vending machine will incentivise people to stop littering and recycle instead.

The reverse vending machine - which pays you for your plastic bottles - was officially opened today in Market Square Shopping Centre, Carrickmacross, Co Monaghan.

Speaking on RTÉ's Morning Ireland, Brenda McGuigan said that if the initiative is successful, she hopes it can be rolled out across the country.

Ms McGuigan said that a committee member brought the idea back from Germany where it has been in operation since 2003. The machines have also been introduced in other countries such as Canada and China

She explained that the machine, which has a database of thousands of bottles that it can identify, gives the customer a 10c voucher for every bottle.

This voucher can then be redeemed in the local supermarket.

The scheme is being sponsored by Shabra plastics and Quinn Packaging and will operate for at least a year.

Ms McGuigan said the process will be a "full 360", explaining that plastics will be processed and re-made into packaging locally.

Meanwhile, the winner of the SuperValu TidyTowns competition today was another Monaghan town.

The town of Glaslough in Co Monaghan was awarded the title of Ireland's tidiest town.