As a nation, we’ve done pretty well at reducing our use of plastic bags, crucially since the introduction of the 5p plastic bag charge back in 2015.
In fact, plastic bag usage dropped 80% following the introduction of the charge. It forced us to look at our plastic bag habits and to reuse plastic bags or look for alternatives. But we still depend on them and they will eventually deteriorate and not be fit for purpose, so then what?
- Return them to a shop. Major supermarkets including Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Waitrose and the Co-Op sometimes have points for recycling plastic bags, but you’ll need to check as not all stores have this facility. Often, supermarkets will replace broken or damaged Bags for Life for new ones too.
- Post them to a specialist recycling plant. Polyprint in Norwich accept many types of plastic that are otherwise difficult to recycle, including plastic film, cling film and other food wrapping (as long as it’s clean).
- Find a local plastic bag recycling point using this handy tool from Recycle Now.
- Put plastic bags into your household recycling. But beware: not all local authorities can recycle plastic bags. In fact, only 18% of UK households can recycle plastic bags through their usual recycling collections. At the moment, West Sussex residents and businesses cannot recycle plastic bags this way
Despite these methods for recycling plastic bags, they are still difficult to recycle because there is no easy way to separate biodegradable and non-biodegradable plastic bags and they cannot be recycled together.
A more sustainable solution for the future is to consider non-plastic reusable bags. Even Bags for Life are still plastic, so when they’re worn out and headed for recycling, think about replacing it with an alternative material.
Rabbit is committed to reducing waste and supporting recycling efforts. Contact Rabbit today for more information on skip hire, recycling and plant hire. Reach us on 01903 762020 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.