We’ve always considered Sustainability to be a key component of our mission. We have an active employee “Green Team” committee that makes recommendations to Management on ways we can improve recycling in our store, we choose more ecologically friendly packaging and actively work to reduce our carbon footprint.
Another initiative gaining traction (both locally and nationally) is the “Ban the Bag” movement. In fact, the New Hampshire legislature is currently debating just such a measure for 2020. We’ve always encouraged the use of reusable bags — but have also always had a plastic option available for our customers as well.
Starting on June 1 we will no longer have single-use plastic bags available at the register. Instead, we will have recycled paper bags which customers can purchase for a dime each. We’ll also have a large variety of reusable bags available for purchase at affordable prices to encourage their use.
We decided to take this initiative before we are legally required to because it fits our mission and it is the right thing to do. We know that paper bags are not the answer,
even if they are made from recycled paper. Manufacturing paper bags requires more energy and water resources than plastic. The real answer is to promote reusable bags whenever possible. We are looking at all of our plastic usage in the store and are transitioning to better options slowly but surely. Many of the alternatives are more expensive, or don’t meet our quality standards. We don’t want to sacrifice food safety in this transition process. Please bear with us as we experiment with different options throughout the store, and we welcome your feedback.
I understand that there are divergent views on this topic. Many of our customers wanted us to do this years ago, while others are perfectly happy the way things are. Change is always a challenge, but we feel as an organization that the time for this change is now.
Ed King, General Manager