Waitrose to remove 40 million bags

From September 27, all new Waitrose.com deliveries and in-store collections will be “bagless” – eliminating an estimated 40 million plastic bags per year.

The move will coincide with the reinstatement of into-home deliveries, with drivers once again able to assist customers with heavy lifting and unpacking. Alternatively, customers can bring their shopping into the home on crates provided or request assistance from the driver to transfer it into their own bags at the doorstep.

On the same day, Waitrose will also remove 10p bags for life from all of its core stores, a decision that follows extensive research showing that these have increasingly become single use items.

A new reusable alternative will be available from Monday 27, which is twice as durable, made from recycled materials and fully recyclable. At 50p, it will become the entry level bag in the wider reusable bags collection.

James Bailey, executive director of Waitrose, comments: “We’ve long pledged to reduce single use plastics, so we have a clear obligation to remove our bags for life because they are no longer being reused as originally intended.

“While our new bag is more durable and fully recyclable, it is available as a last resort only and for customers with no other option. We do not want anyone to buy our new bags and instead would urge all our customers to bring ones they already have stocked away in cupboards at home as this is the best thing for the environment.”

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