The small act of remembering your reusable bags when you go shopping has a big impact on saving money and natural resources.
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Just by switching to reusable shopping bags and remembering to take them every time you go shopping, you’ll be saving money, natural resources and the planet.
It’s a small act with a big impact on Victoria’s sustainable future.
Plastic bags, together with other single-use plastic items such as water bottles and straws, make up one third of the litter we see on Victoria’s streets and in our parks and waterways. Once in the environment, they cause a whole range of issues.
Forgetting reusable bags when we shop happens to all of us. Make it easy to remember your reusable bags by:
By storing your reusable bags in a few convenient locations, you always have some on hand for when you head out to shop. Wherever you store your reusable bags, make sure to wash them regularly to keep them clean.
After unpacking your shopping and checking that your bags are clean, put them back by the door, in your car or in your carry bag so they are ready for next time.
It's always best to use bags that you already have at home instead of buying new ones. We recommend using a variety of bags that:
Reusable fruit and vegetable bags (also known as produce bags) are small, lightweight bags that come in various materials, sizes and designs. You can buy them at most major retailers including supermarkets, smaller shops or from online retailers. If you’re handy with a sewing machine, you could even create and make your own. Keep them in your handbag, backpack or in your reusable shopping bags to avoid using plastic bags when you shop for fruit and vegetables.
A soft plastic is a type of plastic that can easily be scrunched into a ball.
If you cannot avoid using soft plastics and single-use bags, it is important that you do not put them in your recycling bin at home as they can prevent recycling from being processed and turned into new products. Instead, take them to a recycling drop-off point near you. These days, most drop-off points at supermarkets accept single-use plastic bags.
In 2019, the Victorian Government implemented a ban on lightweight plastic shopping bags that have a thickness of 35 microns or less. That’s why it is more important than ever to take simple actions to remember your reusable shopping bags.
In addition, the Victorian Government will ban single-use items, including straws, cutlery, plates, drink-stirrers, expanded polystyrene food and drink containers and cotton bud sticks by February 2023. Learn more about the ban on single-use items.
There are many other easy ways to reduce waste and recycle more. Find a small act that works for you and be part of Victoria’s sustainable future.