Plastic Bags

Thought it would be nice to let you lot know what is going on and any future plans etc.
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Andy Hamilton
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Post: # 6770Post Andy Hamilton
Tue Oct 11, 2005 4:42 pm

Lyds wrote:Any news on the cloth bags yet Andy?
Gone back to downsizer again as someone there has been making sounds about them apparently. Just well frustrating not being able to get a migratory authorisation code from demon so I can get back online and sort it. I have taken it up with ofcom but still waiting for a reponse.
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Post: # 6839Post NicolaH
Tue Oct 18, 2005 9:42 pm

I use organic cotton string bags from naturalcollection.co.uk they are SOOOO strong and spacey yet gentle on your fruit and veg!
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Hmmm...

Post: # 6981Post Guest
Mon Oct 24, 2005 1:20 pm

Well good for The Co-Op, I say. Leading the way, once again, in their quiet and unassuming way. An informative answer, though maybe not without its faults.
Could someone explain this bit too me...

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Post: # 7399Post Andy Hamilton
Tue Nov 15, 2005 11:20 am

I think that that last response refers to the link from the carrier bag article that give the email I was sent from the coop in response to my contact with them. The coop are the uk's most ethical big supermarket. Still a supermarket but they are slightly better then the others.

I thought I would carry on a bit of pressure after noticing some litter outside my local sainsbury's. - Here is an email I sent today.

For the attention of Geoff Cole - Bath store manager

I was walking along the canal recently and I was disgusted to see Sainsbury's carrier bags strewn all over the place on the towpath near to your store.

As you may or may not know you bags take many years to degrade and what is worse, they will be affecting any life in the canal and beyond. I know that supermarkets are not known for their social responsibility but as you are situated in a world heritage city, I wondered what sort of image litter that is obviously from your store conveys.

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Post: # 7400Post Lyds
Tue Nov 15, 2005 1:13 pm

Excellent Andy - do post their reply for us to read. As to social responsibility have you looked at the Corporate Critic website? This site enables you to check the ethiscore of major companies and there are some surprises. The score is out of 15 - Co-op 14, Asda 0.5, T***o 2.5, Waitrose 6.5, Somerfield 4.5, Sainsbury 3.5, Morrisons 4.5, Spar 11.5, Boots 3.5 now how about that, I always thought that Boots went for no animal testing first and were everso responsible. It seems that their final product is not tested on animals but the ingredients might be. Anyway I've gone off the thread.

My local greengrocer is now selling green cloth shopping bags (very strong) for £1.00, I also have a couple from Greenlife in Totnes. Now my local health food shop is thinking of getting some - she only uses other peoples recycled bags anyway. So things are looking up :mrgreen:

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Post: # 7403Post Andy Hamilton
Tue Nov 15, 2005 1:48 pm

I will post the reply. I am surprised that morrisons got 4.5 with there double packaged veg!

My local bookshop has also started to make their own bags, http://www.secessionbooks.com/ - so yep change is happening, slowly.
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Post: # 7915Post Wormella
Fri Dec 23, 2005 10:41 am

We've got really nice big strong hemp bags from Barcelona (my parents bring them back for us) they really are great, but sometimes a bit big to pop in a handbag.

maybe if we just got some trendy fashion people to be seen with a shopping bag we could stop this plastic bag madness.

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Post: # 7983Post LSP
Tue Dec 27, 2005 6:29 pm

I wonder what members of this Forum have to say about the Scottish plastax that's NOT going to happen for now. :angry4:

Meanwhile, over in China, toxic benzene has been spilled into rivers. Benzene is used in the making of plastic bags and pesticides of course. :angry4: :angry4:

I see these as related issues and discuss them here:

http://organically.blogspot.com/2005/12 ... rt-ii.html

http://organically.blogspot.com/2005/12 ... rmful.html

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Post: # 8012Post ina
Wed Dec 28, 2005 2:43 pm

I'd never made this connection between plastic bags and benzene spills in China... Put's me off even more.

However, I still think that going for a "tax" on plastic bags is wrong. It just puts people's backs up - nobody wants to pay even more tax! Instead I would propose that shops shouldn't be allowed to give away goods for free. Plastic bags are goods, and they should have to be paid for like everything else.

And to Wormella's suggestion that trendy fashion people should be seen with shopping bags to make them more acceptable - do you really think those kind of people do their own shopping? Somehow I can't see it. I'm sure they have their staff to do it. Or they get it delivered...

Ina

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Post: # 8033Post LSP
Wed Dec 28, 2005 8:38 pm

ina wrote:I would propose that shops shouldn't be allowed to give away goods for free. Plastic bags are goods, and they should have to be paid for like everything else.
Ina
The plastic bags we are 'given' are certainly not free. They have been factored into the overheads of any business. :pale: Which is why those of us who carry our own bags should have some money back.

If M&S does give away 200 MILLION bags at at least 1 penny a bag (almost certainly more with the printing) every year as a newspaper report states, it's a thumping £2 million, possibly more. Some plastic bag manufacturer/retailer/printer is making a lot of money.

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Post: # 8064Post Andy Hamilton
Thu Dec 29, 2005 3:36 pm

As with most people I am not a big fan of Tax. However, if it is the only way to stop people using so many and thinking about their over consumption then it can only be a good thing. Aldi and Lidl have always charged for bags and most people will bring their own so it can work.
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Post: # 8072Post ina
Thu Dec 29, 2005 5:08 pm

LSP wrote: The plastic bags we are 'given' are certainly not free. They have been factored into the overheads of any business. :pale: Which is why those of us who carry our own bags should have some money back.
I quite agree - they aren't free, but they aren't charged for directly. And I have heard people complain that Lidl etc don't give them away for free. Well, I suggested those folk should try and work out why these shops can be cheaper than the other supermarkets: maybe because they charge for bags, and don't waste money on music, and they make you return your trolley yourself? All aspects of the "shopping experience" that allegedly the British customer can't live without. (Not me, but then I'm not British... Oh, and in Germany they always had to be paid for in supermarkets/ food shops. They were, and probably still are, free in clothes shops etc.)

Anyway, in the end I don't care what it is called, tax or whatever, or whether the government just bans them outright. As long as something happens to reduce them drastically.

Ina

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Post: # 9608Post Shirley
Fri Jan 27, 2006 11:07 pm

I remember when we used to have to pay for carrier bags at our local shops - I also remember a time when I worked in Sainsbury's and people would turn their noses up at having to pay for the heavier duty bags (now generally offered as 'bags for life' at the big 4!

I don't think a tax is the right way to do it - but I do think that education at a VERY early age is the key... even when you get your baby packs when you find out you are pregnant you are handed a plastic carrier bag with info in it... perhaps the government should arrange for a cloth bag to be used instead - it could then be refilled at the various other stages (when we would normally receive yet another plastic bag filled with dubious goodies - samples of creams and lotions full of artificial crap that we are led to believe will be good for our babies) - the cost could be subsidised by advertising of course!!! Bring your bag in here for a discount at this store....

Hmmm... nattering with Ina last weekend at the farmers market I was thinking that you could get in touch with various people that might want to advertise... a mag that I buy has cloth bags and has web addy and logo of the mag and a bit of blurb on the other side... perhaps the other side could be 'bought' and the price of the bag printing and supply cost shared.

I WANT a cloth bag with Selfsufficient-ish on it... I would buy for my friends for birthdays and christmas too!!
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Post: # 9631Post ina
Sat Jan 28, 2006 12:27 pm

Shirlz2005 wrote: I don't think a tax is the right way to do it - but I do think that education at a VERY early age is the key... even when you get your baby packs when you find out you are pregnant you are handed a plastic carrier bag with info in it... perhaps the government should arrange for a cloth bag to be used instead
You are right, education is really the point where it all has to start. (Do I remember a politician we all know say education, education...etc?)
When in Udine (Northern Italy) for a workshop some years ago, we were given a clothbag with information on the place as a welcome present. To my horror, my colleague, quite a sensible guy normally, fairtrade supporter etc, took out the brochures and chucked the bag in the bin :shock: . Didn't understand why I was upset about it.
Needless to say, I still have that bag.

Ina

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Post: # 9640Post Shirley
Sat Jan 28, 2006 2:09 pm

Glad to hear it Ina... did you take the one out of the bin too?? I would have done.

Out of interest - what do you pay for cloth bags everyone?? They vary in price A LOT, and I wonder whether they are cheaper in countries where they are used more often??

I've paid £3 for a cloth bag and have seen them offered for a fiver before now. Cheapest I've paid is £1.50 and that was at a 'green' food shop.

Shirlz xx
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