Sainsbury’s hides bags under the counter
by David Masters
September 24, 2008
As of October 1st, Sainsbury’s will become the latest retailer to hide plastic bags at the till in a bid to get customers to re-use their carriers.
Customers wanting an orange Sainbury’s bag will not have to pay, but will have to ask the cashier for a bag.
Those re-using old carrier bags will be rewarded with extra points on their Nectar loyalty card, a scheme that has been in place since June.
Signs informing customers that they will have to ask for bags from next month have been displayed in Sainbury’s stores for the last 10 days.
The grocery giant hopes the move will help it meet its pledge to cut the number of carrier bags given away in half by April next year.
A statement from the supermarket said the company wants to reduce its environmental impact, and added that it hopes hiding carrier bags will help customers do their bit for the environment too by re-using bags.
Supermarket and clothes retailer Marks and Spencer started charging 5p for carrier bags in all of its food halls earlier this year, whilst low-cost supermarkets such as Lidl have had bag charges in place for years.
Sainbury’s executives, however, say charges will not be introduced as customers have made it clear that they do not want to pay for bags.
Climate change minister Joan Ruddock has warned retailers that if they don’t start charging for carrier bags, the government will impose a 10p carrier bag tax.
UK shoppers currently throw away 17 billion plastic bags every year, with each one of those bags taking up to 500 years to degrade.
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