New Coles plastic bag move 'a weak act'

Coles plastic bag ban backflip

Coles plastic bag ban backflip

Coles' backdown infuriated environmental lobby group Greenpeace, which said the supermarket's decision was bad for the planet.

With threats of a shopping boycott by environmentally minded shoppers, Coles announced on Thursday that customers would start paying for bags on August 29.

Every state and territory except New South Wales has either outlawed single-use plastic bags, or has plans to ban them.

The retail boss sent an all-staff email empathising with his team that the change from single-use plastic bags "has been a big and hard change for many of our customers".

A mere 24 hours after announcing that it would continue to 0ffer free plastic bags to customers indefinitely, Coles has backflipped on this providing a cut-off date for the complimentary bags.

Now, I'm not advocating violence but what I would advocate is stop being a bunch of compliant saps and when somebody does something stupid, which this unquestionably is, go "it isn't good enough and I'm not going to stop with you until you change your policy".

Now, thicker reusable bags which had previously cost 15 cents each will be handed out for free.

Harris Farm Markets has historically been vocal about the issue, previously teaming up with Clean Up Australia, who this afternoon also displayed displeasure at Coles' announcement.

"Removing the price means that these reusable bags are far more likely to be used once and discarded", Black said.

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Earlier today, a Coles spokesperson confirmed to Inside Retail that they believed customers needed more time to adjust to the change.

EARLIER: THOUGHT the plastic bag debacle was over?

"This is happening all over the world and Australia needs to step up the game".

The supermarket giant scrapped single-use bags in supermarkets around the country from July 1 which coincided with a statewide ban introduced in Queensland.

Also whilst we're here, can we talk about how stupid and useless that new Coles "mini-collectables" campaign is.

Coles will give its "Better Bags" away for free.

Coles is handing out a collectable range of 30 mini-products, from Vegemite jars to Tim Tams, as a promotion.

"It's just messy", chief executive Gayle Sloan said. Others said they have lived overseas, in countries such as the United Kingdom and Germany, where plastic bag bans have not caused an issue.

The decision sparked claims the company was "making a mockery of their stated commitment to reduce plastic waste".

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