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Countdown to remove single-use plastic produce bags from 19 stores

(Source: Bigstock.)

Countdown will remove single-use plastic produce bags from 19 supermarkets late this month after a successful trial in the chain’s Herne Bay store which opened in June. 

The pilot, which begins on July 25, is planned to help Countdown management understand how to make the transition as easy as possible for customers. 

“As we get used to a new normal, we want to bring some renewed focus to delivering on the ambitious sustainability commitments we have set out to achieve by 2025, including our action on plastic,” said Countdown’s commercial director of fresh, Pieter De Wet. 

“Setting a goal to be out of single-use plastic produce bags ahead of any government ban feels like a positive start.”

Countdown was the first supermarket to phase out single-use plastic bags at the checkout in all of its stores, well ahead of the government’s ban. Now, says De Wet, the retailer wants to be the first to phase out plastic produce bags.

“Our customers use around 50 million single-use plastic produce bags each year. With a government phase-out expected by mid-next year, we want to help our customers adapt to being single-use plastic produce bag-free ahead of time.”

He said the company had received a lot of feedback from customers suggesting single-use produce bags are unnecessary and a lot are already forgoing them in stores. 

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