Haley Thomassen shows off Buckerfield’s designer reusable bags. As part of a pilot project, the new Langford store will not offer any single-use bags when it opens. If successful, the concept could extend to all Buckerfield’s locations.

Buckerfield’s launches reusable bag experiment

New store to test program that could come to all nine Buckerfield’s

There is no way to avoid a certain amount of consumption. We require food, water and shelter to stay alive. All of us are consumers in this regard and all of us will produce waste from our personal level of consumption.

Faced with serious and threatening global warming, we need to think about our consumption and what we throw away or recycle. Just by doing small things like not wasting food we make a huge difference.

What about single-use plastic carry-out bags? Do we need them or are they an unnecessary convenience that produces unnecessary waste?

If we took all the single-use plastic bags consumed in British Columbia in one year, how much do you think they would weigh? How many tonnes of convenience would that be, all heading from the cash register to the disposal bin in record time? How many hydrocarbons wind up in the atmosphere from the mountain of single-use plastic and paper bags that we consume?

Buckerfield’s stores alone go through hundreds of pounds of plastic carry-out bags every year. That’s hundreds of pounds of plastic winding up in disposal and recycle bins just minutes after being used.

Wouldn’t it be dead easy to stop doing this? Are we not capable of organizing ourselves personally so that we don’t need to keep collecting and throwing out single-use plastic bags? Can’t we simply eliminate them and their carbon footprint? Shouldn’t we do this if we can?

Accepting the challenge

There is actually some debate about this but Buckerfield’s isn’t biting. Instead, the business will not offer single-use carry out bags when it opens the new Langford store on April 1.

Customers are asked to bring their own reusable carry-out bags from home or carry out everything without using a bag whenever possible. Staff will also help customers to their cars with their purchases the way Buckerfield’s employees have done for years.

Finally, Buckerfield’s will make available reusable designer bags if customers are really stuck. When selling the customer a reusable bag, staff will staple the receipt inside the bag so it’s there when they return for their second visit. When they return, Buckerfield’s will refund the full cost of the bag if the receipt is still inside the bag and they have made another purchase of $5 or more.

Buckerfield’s objective is to supply people with reusable bags at no charge so they can avoid using single-use bags. Switching to reusable bags and containers has to be a good thing doesn’t it?

If the program goes well in Langford, it will be extended it to all nine stores in British Columbia. They might run out of designer bags at the start but they have ordered more!

This is a pilot project. Please think responsibly about your personal consumption, your personal carbon footprint and our atmosphere. Then let Buckerfield’s know if you support the idea of eliminating single-use plastic and paper bags.

See you in Langford in April 2018. Bring any old reusable bag from home, go bag-less or get a brand new designer bag on us. But please don’t ask for a single-use carry-out bag because they won’t have any.

***

A favourite supplier to farmers, pet owners and homesteaders in British Columbia since 1919, Buckerfields operates nine locations throughout the province, from Salmon Arm to Saanichton.

When on Vancouver Island, visit the new Langford store, open seven days a week starting April 1.

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