Big Y eliminates plastic bags at all locations Aug. 1

  • Big Y World Class Market in Northampton  GAZETTE FILE PHOTO

Staff Writer
Published: 7/29/2019 11:43:03 PM

Big Y Foods Inc. announced it will eliminate single-use plastic bags at the checkouts from its more than 80 supermarket locations in Massachusetts and Connecticut on Aug. 1.

The stores will offer discounts on reusable bags through the month of August as customers transition away from plastic, according to the company.

“For those shoppers who do not bring their own shopping bags beginning in August, a 10-cent charge per paper bag will be added to their bill,” the company announced. “This fee is in an effort to promote the use of reusable bags instead of paper, which also cause harm to the environment.”

Big Y has been complying with single-use plastic bag bans in several Massachusetts communities since 2014. Coming off of recent changes to laws in various towns across New England, Big Y has moved up its 2020 timeline to eliminate single-use plastic at checkouts in all of its locations “to streamline operations and to do its part to support sustainability,” the company stated.

In Hampshire County, Big Y has locations in Northampton, Amherst, Southampton, South Hadley and Ware. Of the five locations, only Ware still uses plastic bags, although a representative from Big Y said that the store is set to comply with the new regulations. The other four communities already have plastic bag bans in place.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, more than 380 billion plastic bags are used in the United States each year.

“At Big Y, beyond providing great quality, great prices and great customer service, we also try to be smart about the resources and energy we use,” said Richard D. Bossie, Big Y senior vice president of operations and customer experience. “By working with our shoppers, we can further reduce consumption to make a difference in and around the tight-knit communities that we serve across New England.”

Customers can keep their reusable bags in shopping-shape by washing them regularly with soap and water or disinfectant wipes. Big Y’s team of registered dietitians share tips for reusable bag cleaning online at bit.ly/2SAaTtc.


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