Shoppers in the UK will have to pay 10p for single use plastic bags

Environment Minister Rebecca Pow Credit: DEFRA

FROM May 21 in England, the minimum charge for plastic bags will increase from 5p to 10p per bag, and will be applicable to all businesses regardless of size.

This is already in place in Scotland and Wales and the Association of Convenience Stores (ACS) has welcomed the long-awaited extension of plastic bag charging to all businesses which will provide consistency for consumers and further opportunity for retailers to raise money for good causes.

Environment Minister Rebecca Pow said, “The introduction of the 5p charge has been a phenomenal success, driving down sales of harmful plastic bags in supermarkets by a remarkable 95 per cent.”

“We know we must go further to protect our natural environment and oceans, which is why we are now extending this charge to all businesses.

“Over the next couple of weeks, I urge all retailers of all sizes to make sure they are ready for the changes, as we work together to build back greener and strengthen our world-leading action to combat the scourge of plastic waste.”

New figures from DEFRA show that as a result of the carrier bag charge, the average person in England now buys just four single-use carrier bags a year from the main supermarkets, compared with 140 in 2014.

By extending the charge to all retailers, the Government expects that the use of single-use carrier bags will decrease by 70-80% in small and medium-sized businesses.

Around half of the independent retailers in the convenience sector already charge for plastic bags, with many removing plastic bags from sale altogether revealed the ACS.

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John Smith

Married to Ophelia in Gibraltar in 1978, John has spent much of his life travelling on security print and minting business and visited every continent except Antarctica. Having retired several years ago, the couple moved to their house in Estepona and John became a regular news writer for the EWN Media Group taking particular interest in Finance, Gibraltar and Costa del Sol Social Scene. Share your story with us by emailing [email protected], by calling +34 951 38 61 61 or by messaging our Facebook page www.facebook.com/EuroWeeklyNews

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