Food Chopper in Forteau has gone green.
Owner Brad Hancock said the recent move away from plastic bags is something he’s been thinking about implementing for several months.
Hancock is determined to make the initiative work. And by comments shoppers wrote on the store’s Facebook page, after the business announced it will no longer use plastic bags, customers are also onboard with the decision.
Hancock said the move away from plastic is for environmental reasons.
Forteau is situated about 13 kilometres northeast of the Quebec/Labrador border. Hancock said grocery stores on the Quebec side of the border are already using non-plastic bags.
Reusable grocery bags can be bought at Forteau Food Chopper for 99 cents a bag, while large paper bags can be bought for five cents a bag.
At the Municipalities NL annual general meeting in 2017, 83 per cent of municipalities voted in support of a provincially-mandated ban on single-use plastic bags.
Municipalities NL 2017 Plastic Bag Ban Strategic Plan for Members note that there are still 100 million single-use plastic shopping bags used each year in the province that require approximately 1.6 million litres of oil to produce. Almost half of all windborne litter escaping from landfills is plastic, the document noted, with much of that plastic coming from single-use bags.
Hancock said many shoppers agree a ban is necessary.
“A customer said to me yesterday, that people are looking for our governments to step up and come in with rules to ban plastic bags,” he noted. “But, she said, if businesses don’t do it themselves, it will probably never get done.”
Hancock agrees with his customer’s way of thinking. Business owners need to take responsibility, he said.
“And as of Monday (Aug. 6), we’ve gone completely plastic-free.”