According to VP of Corporate Communications for Big Y Claire D’Amour-Daley, 70 stores and gas stations will be impacted by the change in 2020.
Plastic bag bans have been in effect since 2014 at stores in Adams, Mass., Amherst, Mass., Great Barrington, Mass., Lee, Mass., Northampton, Mass., and South Hadley, Mass. Daley said customers have been supportive of environmentally responsible business practices.
Big Y’s experience with those stores is said to have “prompted officials to evaluate the possibility of a chain-wide ban.”
Currently, Big Y uses 100 million plastic bags and 3.5 million paper bags each year.
Paper bags, Daley said, are not an answer to the waste problem “as the paper production process is harmful to the environment, causing increased greenhouse gas emissions and deforestation.”
For the rest of 2019 Big Y will offer special discounted prices and promotions on reusable bags that can be cleaned with soap and water or a disinfectant wipe.
“Single use plastic bags can no longer be viewed as a long term solution for our stores,” said Big Y Vice President, Richard Bossie. “Our customers and the communities we serve have made it quite clear that they prefer more environmentally friendly alternatives.”