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Tesco tackles plastic waste by dropping single use bags

Tesco, an ISL Waste Management client, have announced that from later this summer, customers will no longer be able to purchase single use bags at its checkouts.

Until now, customers could choose between the more expensive yet sturdy bag for life, or a more flimsy (often throw-away) option. Although the use of these cheaper bags has reduced dramatically since the 5p charge was introduced, the supermarket giant is going one step further to tackle the issue of plastic waste.

Tesco Lurgan

From 28th August the only bag on offer at all Tesco stores will be the 94% recycled plastic bag for life, costing 10p. The bag can be returned and replaced once it is no longer useable.

Tesco bosses originally trialled the idea at Aberdeen, Dundee and Norwich stores for ten weeks this year. They found that sales of bags fell by 25% overall, while customers reacted positively to the reusable option.

Tesco single use bagThe company will also be removing their single use wine carriers from stores and instead reducing the price of their reusable wine bag from £1 to 40p.

All profits generated from sales of Bags For Life and the wine bags, will continue to be donated to Tesco’s Bags of Help scheme. The company works with UK charity Groundwork, who award local community groups with grants and funding to help with small environmental projects.

The purchasing of single use carrier bags has plummeted by 83% since the 5p charge was introduced in 2015. Tesco alone has supplied 1.5 billion less since the levy came into action. There has been a large reduction in street litter and waste as a result.