With the new single-use plastic bag ban rolling out across Australia there is a large emphasis on retailers and their recycling practices. Here are some highlights from a few of our retailers making progress in this space.
“The removal of single-use plastic bags has been a really important topic for our customers and our team, which is why BIG W committed to phase out all single-use plastic bags at our checkouts nationally. After listening to our customers and working with our teams, we're proud to announce that from the 1st of July 2018 all BIG W stores will be single-use plastic bag free. We are committed to playing our part in reducing plastic usage and believe that this is the right thing to do for our environment.
This means that we, from the 1st of July, will no longer provide ‘free’ plastic bags at our checkouts in store. We've always encouraged the use of reusable bags and with this change it's now more important than ever for customers to bring in their own bags from home or pick up one of our reusable bags in store.”
Find out more about Big W’s recycling practices here.
"We removed single use plastic shopping bags across all Coles businesses on 1 July 2018. The move will bring our stores in Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and Western Australia in line with Tasmania, South Australia, the Northern Territory and the ACT, where Coles already complies with bans on single use bags. Please click here for more information. For more information about what these changes mean for you when shopping online with Coles please click here.
We encourage our customers to use reusable bags when they shop at Coles and offer a range of reusable bags for customers to purchase. We recently introduced the Coles Better Bag which is made from 80 percent recycled material and has been designed to be reused. We also offer the REDcycle program in all stores where customer can recycle bags and other soft plastic.
Find out more about Coles and their recycling program here.
"At Woolworths we are committed to reducing our use of plastic packaging across our business, whilst we’ve made some progress we know there is a lot more we can do. From 20 June, we will no longer be giving out single-use plastic bags at our checkouts or online and we have a number of other initiatives to remove, reduce and recycle plastic packaging. All Woolworths stores will have a soft plastics recycling bin for you to bring in soft plastics that can’t be recycled at home. We are reducing plastic packaging on fruits and vegetables and our Woolworths branded products have adopted the Australasian Recycling Label to help customers decide which bin packaging should go in.
Removing single-use plastic bags - To help reduce our impact on the environment, we made a commitment to remove more than 3.2 billion single-use plastic bags from our stores. It’s a commitment that we made after listening to our customers and our teams, and from 20 June, an important step we’re taking towards a greener future.
Find out more about Woolworth's recycling program here.
“Bakers Delight promotes the use of environmentally friendly calico bags and encourages paper bags where possible or the reusing of plastic bags, in an effort to reduce landfill. The calico bags are made from cotton, a natural bio-degradable fibre. Bakers Delight donates 5 cents towards Clean Up Australia for every bag sold. Bakers Delight works with packaging suppliers in reducing the use of plastic bags and amount of ingredient packaging.”
Find out more about Baker’s Delight and their recycling practices here.
"We are focused on reducing our waste-to-landfill in stores, minimizing our packaging and partnering with our customers to reuse or recycle products and packaging where possible at the end of their useful life. To achieve our target of a 30% reduction in waste-to-landfill, we are working to improve our current waste management system in stores, including better separation and recycling of flexible plastic and cardboard, and the reduction of polystyrene packaging.
In the past year, Kmart increased its focus on packaging reduction through its supply chain. This included a focus on reducing or eliminating all forms of cardboard packaging and replacing it with reusable PVC bags. To date, the initiative has been rolled out to more than 75% of apparel suppliers, and is currently being trialled with soft home suppliers. Building on this experience, we aim to set a long-term target to reduce cardboard usage across our supply chain in the next year.
Longer-term, we are looking at further ways to engage our customers and community to reduce, reuse and recycle. An example of this is our partnership with MRI, along other Wesfarmers divisions, to provide a free recycling service for households and small businesses to dispose of unwanted televisions, computers and computer products (such as printers, keyboards and mice), regardless of their age or brand.
Find out more about Kmart's recycling practices here.