What has changed?
Shoppers are now charged 5p for
every new plastic bag they use at large stores in England.
The charge applies only to shops
or chains with 250 or more full-time employees.
Plastic bags at airport shops or
on board trains, planes or ships, will not be included, and neither will paper
England is the last country in
the UK to start charging for plastic bags.
Ministers think introducing a 5p
charge will stop shoppers using as many new bags, and encourage people to
re-use old ones.
The government hopes to see an
80% reduction in plastic bag use in supermarkets, and a 50% fall on the high
Over the next decade it hopes the
charge will create:
§ £60m savings in litter clean-up costs
§ £13m in carbon savings
is being done elsewhere?
In 2011, Wales started charging 5p per bag and saw a 71% drop in the
number used by customers.
Scotland and Northern Ireland introduced their charges in 2014 and 2013
respectively and have also seen significant drops in usage.
In Scotland the charge was
introduced in the final 11 weeks of 2014 and figures show a drop of 18% when
compared with the statistics for the previous year. Similarly, in Northern
Ireland in 2014 there was a 42.6% annual reduction following a previous drop of
71%, after the carrier bag charge was introduced.
But the UK is not alone in trying
to limit use.
In 2002, Bangladesh became the
first country in the world to ban thinner plastic bags altogether, after they
were found to have choked local drainage systems during floods.
Other countries including South
Africa, Rwanda, Kenya, China, and Italy followed suit.
More recently Mexico City and the US state of California imposed bans.
been the reaction?
A survey of more than 2,000
people commissioned by Break the Bag Habit coalition - which includes the
Campaign to Protect Rural England and Keep Britain Tidy among others - found
that 62% of people in England agreed a 5p charge was "reasonable".
other bags are available?
At Something Different we offer a
huge range of bags in many materials.
Kraft paper & gloss paper bags are ideal for events but for longer
term use we recommend cotton, canvas, jute, polypropylene or polyester. There is a very wide variety of sizes &
colours with many different print
All our bags are ethically
sourced and have guaranteed quality. We
have supplied bags for over 20 years, but the new demand has been really
high. Folding bags that will fit in pockets
or handbags are particularly popular as people get into the habit of having a
bag with them whenever they are out shopping.
Some bags have a very fast delivery time, but most are 2-3 weeks. Bespoke bags may take longer if sourced from
EU or Far East.
Many examples are
shown on our website www.somethingdifferent.co.uk or call 01905 381162
for a friendly discussion with experienced staff