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Guernsey must wait for its paper carrier bags at Boots

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BOOTS plans to introduce paper carrier bags to Guernsey but is trialling the initiative in larger stores first where more single-use plastic is used.

(Picture by Yui Mok/PA Wire)

The company said that it does not believe it is sustainable to write off the plastic bags it has in stock and removing them from all stores would incur much larger wastage.

‘Given that our sustainability agenda is a major driver for the change, we want to minimise the size of any write-off of plastic bags,’ said a Boots spokesman.

‘Launching across all stores would potentially incur a very large write-off.

‘For the initial launch of our brown paper bags, we have decided to prioritise our larger stores because these are the locations that sell the highest volumes of plastic bags.

‘As our paper bag roll-out continues, our ambition is for retail paper bags to be available in all stores by early 2020.’

The Jersey branch has been chosen as one of 53 stores selected for the trial, alongside major branches such as Oxford Street and Piccadilly Circus.

‘For 170 years, we have demonstrated an ongoing commitment to operating as a socially responsible business, and we recognise the active role we can play in helping to protect the environment,’ said the spokesman.

‘To demonstrate this commitment, we signed up to the UK Plastics Pact in 2018. Proactively transitioning from plastic to 100% recyclable brown paper bags is just one of the steps we’re taking to make a sustainable difference, every day.’

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In recent years, awareness among the public has kick-started a shift in attitudes towards plastics and recycling.

‘Our customers have never been more aware of the environmental impact of our actions, or more passionate about pushing for improved environmental credentials,’ said the spokesman.

‘In a recent survey, 92% of our customers agreed that they are concerned about the number of plastic bags used in the UK, and 94% would support our decision to replace our plastic bags with a brown paper alternative.’

The survey of 6,000 Boots customers was carried out in May.

‘What’s more, with an estimated 1.2m. tonnes of plastic film from packaging entering the UK waste stream every year, there’s never been a more important time to reduce the impact that our own bags have on the environment,’ added the Boots spokesman.

Yves LeMarquand

By Yves LeMarquand
News reporter

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