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Wednesday 3 June 2020: From today, Woolworths customers nationwide will have the option of purchasing paper shopping bags to carry their shopping home in.

The new carry bags, which were trialed successfully at a number of Woolworths stores last year, have been introduced to meet growing customer demand for alternatives which can be easily recycled in household curbside collection.

Made from 70 percent recycled paper, the bags will be sold at cost for 20 cents, in addition to the supermarket’s existing reusable plastic bags and Bag for Good options.

All paper used has been sourced responsibly, as certified by the Forest Stewardship Council, with non-recycled paper used in conjunction with recycled paper to provide a stronger structure. The bags have been tested to carry up to 6kg worth of groceries.

Woolworths Supermarkets Managing Director Claire Peters said: “While the vast majority of our customers bring their own bags, we know customers sometimes drop by a store unplanned or can forget their bags when they’re on the run.

“For some time, customers have told us they’d like the option of a strong paper bag option, so we’re pleased to now offer that choice at our checkouts, alongside our existing reusable plastic bags.

“These paper bags resonated really well with customers when we trialled them in 20 stores last year and we expect to see a positive response from the customers who’ve been asking for this option nationwide.”

Shoppers can now choose from four carry bag options, with Woolworths’ Bag for Good, reusable plastic bags, and foldable bags also available at the checkout.

Woolworths’ Bag for Good is a bag for life and can be replaced for free at any Woolworths store if it becomes damaged, no matter when it was purchased. Any money made from these 99-cent bags helps fund the Woolworths Junior Landcare Grants program. Since launch in 2018, the program has helped support almost 1200 school environmental projects.

The 15-cent reusable bags are made from at least 80 per cent recycled plastics and can be returned to the store, along with other soft plastics, for recycling in REDcycle bins.

Customers looking to reduce the use of plastic bags when purchasing fruit and vegetables will also have an alternative from today.  Reusable nylon produce bags will be available for purchase in a pack of three for $4, the bags are specifically designed to be compatible with Woolworths checkout scales and will be conveniently stationed in the fruit and vegetables section of all Woolworths Metros and select supermarkets. 

Plans are underway to extend the option of paper bags to Woolworths' online customers for home delivery and Pick Up.

Since Woolworths began phasing out single-use plastic bags in 2018 more than 6 billion bags have been taken out of circulation. Only 15 per cent of customers now purchase a new bag during a transaction when visiting a Woolworths store.

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