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Morrisons Move to a More Sustainable Future with Paper Bags

Morrisons launched a “paper bag only” trial in eight of its stores in January 2021. Having proved popular with many customers, Morrisons are now removing plastic bags from all their UK stores in favour for paper bags.

Their Welsh stores will be the first to move to paper carrier bags, before being rolled-out in the English and Scottish supermarkets in May 2021. Made in Wales from sustainably managed forests, the paper bags will be reusable, recyclable and ultimately biodegradable. The new paper bags will be able to carry up to 16kg of shopping, which is equivalent to 13 bottles of wine or 16 bags of sugar. This is a similar performance to its plastic bag alternative.

Andy Atkinson, Group Customer and Marketing Director, at Morrisons said: “We are taking another meaningful step that will remove an estimated 1,300 tonnes of plastic out of the environment each year. Our customers have told us that reducing plastic is their number one environmental concern so introducing the paper bag across the nation will provide another way of reducing the plastic in their lives.”

This isn’t the first time Morrisons has taken a step towards sustainability. They recently chose to offer paper bags (instead of plastic) for all of their loose fruit and veg. Furthermore, they’ve also chosen to remove plastic packaging altogether for many products, including cucumbers that are usually presented in a plastic sleeve. Customer’s can also bring their own containers to Morrisons’ Butcher and Fishmonger counters to help avoid unnecessary consumption of single-use packaging.

You may wander, are paper bags more environmentally friendly?

The raw material for paper bags, wood, is a renewable and sustainable resource. Because of their natural and renewable attributes, paper bags present an attractive and practical alternative to plastic bags. Read how sustainable paper truly is here.

Between 2005 and 2020, European forests grew by 1,500 football pitches every day, or an area equivalent to the size of Switzerland! Far from wasteful, the recycling rate is 85% for paper packaging in Europe. If a paper bag is not recycled and irresponsibly discarded, due to its natural compostable characteristics it will have a relatively low impact and decompose within 4 weeks. Discover more on why paper bags are a natural choice here.

Find out more about Morrison’s commitment to reducing plastic here.