GREENING AND ENVIRONMENT

PICK N PAY seeks to help shift plastic bag usage with 20 000 free reusable bags

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Over the next two weeks Pick n Pay will give 20 000 customers a free reusable bag every day in stores across the country.

Customers who spend more than R50 between 8 and 22 April 2019 will stand the chance to win a 100% recycled RPET Pick n Pick shopping bag. They will be informed immediately at the till point if they have won and will be handed their new bag to use.

Paula Disberry, Retail Executive: Commercial and Marketing at Pick n Pay, says that the retailer has introduced many alternatives to minimise unnecessary single-use plastic in-store over the last year but believes it is important to supplement this with awareness campaigns to further shift customer behaviour, especially when it comes to plastic bags.

In the last year Pick n Pay has seen a 21% increase in the number of people purchasing reusable bags in-store. During the same period, the number of customers who bought a plastic bag when purchasing five or more products has started to show signs of decreasing. While a small shift, this is very encouraging, says Disberry.

She says this campaign offers an opportunity to put reusable bags top of mind for customers.

Part of the campaign will see Smart Shoppers (who have opted in for communication) being informed about their plastic bag usage, and how this compares each month. It will also demonstrate how much they have spent on plastic bags, and how many reusable bags they could have bought instead.

“While plastic bags can be reused and recycled, the reusable bags are more durable and longer-lasting.

“We understand that a plastic carrier bag remains the most economical bag option for customers, so we took up the challenge to introduce the cheapest reusable bag option. In February we launched our R5 budget reusable bag and the response has been overwhelming. This shows the need for more affordable reusable bag options.

“With the giveaway of 20 000 bags every day for 15 days, we hope to provide the means and motivation for our customers to consider changing their shopping bag habits.”

Disberry concludes, “While there are many issues to tackle with plastic waste, by driving customer behaviour we believe it can help create other more conscious plastic decisions.”

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