The Connecticut Food Association (CFA) made a statement June 6 regarding the plan its state has adopted regarding single-use plastic bags:
The state of Connecticut has adopted a plan to place a 10-cent fee on single-use plastic bags at checkout with the ultimate goal of banning them altogether in two years. This fee, which is collected by the retailer, goes back to the state and adds more than $30mm in revenue to the budget before an eventual phase out of all single-use plastic bags is complete in 2022.
The CFA’s goal all along was to have a policy meant to change consumer behavior with the hope that the vast majority of consumers will utilize reusable bags; this law will accomplish that.
Over the next two years, the law will eliminate the production, distribution and usage of more than 80 percent of all single-use bags distributed in Connecticut, reducing in its wake more than 450mm plastic bags.
Single-use plastic bags create an inordinate amount of waste. According to estimates, more than 600mm plastic bags are distributed in Connecticut annually. Only 5 percent are disposed of properly, and far too many end up in the wrong places such as coastal waterways, recycling facilities and incinerators.
The grocery community recognizes its responsibility to cut down on unnecessary plastic waste that contributes to litter, harms the environment and can endanger wildlife. Member companies also recognize that paper is not the answer to this waste problem as the paper production process is harmful to the environment causing increased greenhouse gas emissions and deforestation.
Many customers and the communities the organization serves have made it quite clear that they prefer more environmentally friendly alternatives.
The most sustainable option for consumers is the use of reusable bags that should be washed regularly with soap and water or wiped clean with a disinfectant wipe.
Connecticut’s grocers will continue working to get as many reusable bags into customers’ hands during the transition through promotions, giveaways and rewards.