Coles trials ban on soft plastic produce bags in Canberra stores

Coles will trial a ban on plastic fresh produce bags in ACT supermarkets this month as part of an ongoing effort to cut down on single-use plastic waste.

Single-use plastic fresh produce bags will be removed from all 12 stores across the ACT on 14 September.

From August 31 until September 13, ACT customers who spend $5 in store on fruit and veggies will receive a free 3-pack of reusable mesh fresh produce bags – made with 90 per cent recycled materials.

Customers will be encouraged to bring reusable bags to help them complete their shop, or they can purchase reusable mesh fresh produce bags in store.

Camera IconColes customers can get a set of 3 reusable produce bags with every $5 fruit and veg purchase. Martin Keep/Coles. Credit: NCA NewsWire

The initiative is expected to reduce about 11 tonnes of plastic each year.

“This will be the first time a major Australian supermarket will trial a completely reusable method of helping customers purchase their fresh fruit and veggies,” Coles Chief Operations and Sustainability Officer Matt Swindells said.

Coles will use the trial to decide whether they should rolling out the ban nationally.

The plastic produce bags will continue to be used in delis and in Coles Online orders, and paper bags will still be available in the fresh produce section for customers to pack their mushrooms.

The supermarket is also working to reduce unnecessary plastics in their Own Brand products, including removing plastic scoops from their laundry powders.

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