Last July, Sobeys announced that it would be removing single-use plastic grocery bags from all Sobeys grocery stores by the end of January 2020, and tomorrow it looks like they are set to do just that! Starting Friday, January 31, 2020, Sobeys Inc. will remove all plastic grocery bags from its 255 Sobeys stores across Canada.
As the first national Canadian grocery retailer to ban single-use plastic bags, a recent news release states that this will translate into taking 225 million single-use plastic grocery bags out of circulation each year.
“Knowing that plastic use is not something we can recycle our way out of, it will take a combination of reducing, reusing and recycling to make an impactful and sustainable change.”, stated the retailer. “Eliminating single-use plastic grocery bags, and promoting reusable options, is an important step in Sobeys’ sustainability journey.”
Here’s some of the data that helped them arrive at their decision:
- 225 million plastic grocery bags – that’s the number of single-use plastic bags that will be removed from circulation at all 255 Sobeys stores each year. That’s enough to wrap around the world twice!
- The amount of petroleum it takes to drive a car 1.6 km is the same amount of petroleum needed to produce 14 plastic bags (Source).
- According to the Canadian government, 15 billion plastic bags are used in Canada every year (Source).
- Plastic bags are used for an average of 12 minutes, but a single plastic bag has a life expectancyof up to 1,000 years (Source).
- In 2019, the Canadian government announced plans to “ban harmful single-use plastics as early as 2021 in an effort to reduce the 3 million tons of plastic waste tossed out by the country every year” (Source).