The new bags will be rolled out in stores from tomorrow.
On the whole, we’re pretty good at remembering our ‘bags for life’ when we head out to do the weekly shop.
Before the 5p bag charge was introduced in 2015, each of us got through a scary 140 plastic bags a year on average. But by the end of 2018 this figure had gone down by almost 75 per cent.
But our plastic use is still posing a serious threat to our oceans, so Morrisons want to help us take things one step further – by ditching plastic shopping bags altogether.
From Monday 8th April, Morrisons stores in Wales will be selling reusable paper shopping bags, with English and Scottish stores set to follow suit next month. The bags will cost 20p and are designed to carry up to 16kg (35lb) of groceries.
Morrisons’ Andy Atkinson commented: ‘We are taking another meaningful step that will remove an estimated 1,300 tonnes of plastic out of the environment each year.
‘Our customers have told us that reducing plastic is their number one environmental concern, so introducing the paper bag across the nation will provide another way of reducing the plastic in their lives.’
The bags are recyclable and made from paper sourced from sustainably managed forests. Morrisons say that the carbon footprint of the new bags is about the same as their standard plastic bags for life. The supermarket is also putting the price of its plastic bags up from 15p to 20p on Monday, to match the cost of the new paper bags.
Last year, the environmentally conscious store launched its Too Good To Waste scheme in a bid to cut food waste, offering 1kg boxes of unsold fresh produce for just £1. Lidl rolled out its own scheme last month, selling 5kg fruit and veg boxes for £1.50.
Along with Aldi, Asda, Lidl, Sainsbury’s and Tesco, Morrisons have already scrapped 5p single use plastic bags, a decision they say has cut sales of plastic bags by a quarter.