Australian retailer sets 3rd deadline for free plastic bags

Australian retailer sets 3rd deadline for free plastic bags

Australian retailer sets 3rd deadline for free plastic bags

The supermarket was meant to stop providing its reusable Better Bags for free on August 1 and start charging customers 15 cents per bag, but has backflipped on that decision and appears set to provide them indefinitely.

Instead, they began offering more environmentally-friendly reusable bags for 15 Aus cents (11 USA cents) each, with Coles supplying them without charge until August 1 to help people adjust to the new regime.

"It's all a part of lifting their customer satisfaction and getting more customers in the door", said James Tao, a market analyst at stockbroker Commonwealth Securities in Sydney.

WOOLWORTHS has confirmed it will stick to guns on the plastic bag ban as rival supermarket Coles revealed its surprising backflip.

"Many customers bringing bags from home are still finding themselves short a bag or two so we are offering complimentary reusable better bags to help them complete their shopping".

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Customers will continue to received 30 free Flybuys points at the checkout as a reward for remembering to bring their own bags.

To ease customers in the change, both supermarket giants announced a grace period of a week, in which they handed out the bags for free.

Coles offered them through July and then yesterday announced an "indefinite" extension to the giveaway, which in turn sparked an additional backlash from recycling advocates who said the lack of value in the bags would effectively turn them into single use.

That decision has annoyed environmental groups, who warned the reusable bags are worse for the environment if they are discarded into waterways and habitats.

Speaking to the Herald Sun, director of environmental group Boomerang Alliance Jeff Angel labelled it a "weak act".

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Initially, Coles set an August 1 cut-off date for handing out the free plastic bags.

Coles recently came under fire after launching its Little Shop marketing campaign, releasing a range of plastic miniature versions of popular products like Nutella, Vegemite and Weet-Bix. "None", Steve said while calling her statistics "incorrect".

"That's why we are extending our complimentary bag offer until Wednesday 29 August for our customers in Queensland, NSW, Victoria, and Western Australia", he said.

Woolworths surveyed 12,500 customers in May about the phasing out of single-use bags and found that 75 per cent supported the move, 15 per cent did not support it, and 10 per cent were unsure about it.

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