Starting this week, Stop & Shop will eliminate single-use plastic bags at checkout at all store locations in Connecticut.
The new policy, which begins on Thursday, is designed to help customers transition away from using single-use plastic bags. The store hopes customers in the Nutmeg State will get in the habit of using reusable shopping bags instead.
“We know that the environmental impact of plastics is something our customers and communities care about here in Connecticut, so we’re eliminating single-use plastic bags well ahead of the state mandated timeline – and we’re also placing a 10-cent fee on paper bags to encourage our customers to make the switch to reusable,” said Rudy DiPietro, senior vice president of operations at Stop & Shop.
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Stop & Shop plans to give a free, reusable bag to any customer who brings in one or more single-use plastic bags to their store for recycling. The store said there is a limit of one reusable bag per customer per visit, while supplies last.
The plastic bags that are collected will be recycled into composite wood, which can be used for decking, park benches and playground equipment, store officials said.
During the month of August, Stop & Shop will offer free paper bags for customers. Beginning on September 3, there will be a 10-cent fee on paper bags.
“We also appreciate the fact that it’s going to take our customers time to make this adjustment, so we’re waiving the fee on paper throughout the month of August at most stores, offering reusable bag giveaways, and doing everything we can to help make the transition an easy one,” DiPietro added.
Thursday marks the start of a new tax, where retailers will charge 10 cents for each single-use plastic bag.
Single-use plastic bags are expected to be phased out completely by July 2021.
There are 91 Stop & Shop stores across Connecticut.