Bloomhill Cancer Care’s 11 Sunshine Coast op shops are leading the way ahead of the upcoming Ban the Bag campaign, which will see the Queensland Government ban plastic bags from July 1.
Bloomhill kicked off a plastic bag ban a month early, giving Coast residents a chance to adapt to the sweeping changes, which will see retailers banned from supplying all lightweight plastic bags, including biodegradable, compostable and degradable bags, for free or at a cost.
Bloomhill CEO Chris Franck says the decision to implement the ban early is an initiative of the organisation’s op shop managers and volunteers, who were keen to get on board.
“We are encouraging our shoppers to start bringing their own fabric or reusable bags when they shop in our stores,” Mr Franck says.
“This is a positive initiative and we are very keen to see the changes come into effect as this will be a very welcome change for the environment.”
Mr Franck says the Bloomhill Community Relations team were also investigating designs for a fabric bag featuring the Bloomhill logo.
These will then be included as part of the merchandise available for sale, raising valuable funds for the charity.
The state-wide ban was created in response to the use of close to one billion single-use lightweight plastic shopping bags in Queensland each year.
While the majority of these bags end up in landfill, around 16 million plastic shopping bags – the equivalent in weight to 96 small cars – end up in the environment in Queensland each year.
The State Government and National Retail Association have been working with retailers as varied as grocery stores, fashion boutiques, convenience stores and fast food outlets before the July 1 change and the container refund scheme is on schedule to be introduced on November 1.