In the lead up to World Environment Day on June 5, BIG W stores across Australia are phasing out soft reusable plastic shopping bags.

Over the coming weeks, BIG W will run down stock of 15-cent and larger 45-cent reusable plastic shopping bags to remove over 480 tonnes of plastic from circulation annually. 

The retailer has already removed these bags from stores across Western Australia and with many BIG W shoppers already bringing their own bags when they shop, the retailer is continuing to encourage customers to use their own bags, rather than buying them in store. BIG W paper bags and reusable bag options will be available to those who need them.

BIG W, as part of Woolworths Group, follows in the footsteps of Woolworths supermarkets with its phased removal of 15-cent plastic bags earlier this year. 

BIG W managing director, Dan Hake said, “At BIG W, we believe every small change can make a big difference and this is an exciting next step in our sustainability journey. Saying goodbye to plastic shopping bags will remove over 480 tonnes of plastic out of circulation annually, helping to create a better tomorrow for future generations.

“Since we stopped giving away single-use plastic bags in 2018, we’ve seen an incredible effort from our customers to change the way they shop for the better by bringing their own bags. We’d like to thank them for doing their bit for the environment and we’re looking forward to continuing to work together towards a more sustainable future.” 

BIG W removed single-use plastic bags from stores in 2018, introducing reusable plastic shopping bag options to help customers transition to the change to less plastic. BIG W will help prepare shoppers for the upcoming change, providing advanced notice and signs in stores. 

A paper shopping bag will be available for purchase to customers that is designed to be reused, as well as being easily recycled at home through kerbside recycling. The bags are made from 100% recycled paper, independently certified to FSC standards. The retailer will also offer a wide range of reusable bag options available for purchase in store, including a new 99-cent reusable bag which is made from at least 70% recycled content.