Market combating plastic use with embarrassing bags that no one wants

If publicly shaming customers into using their reusable bags is what it will take to reduce plastic consumption, one Vancouver market is willing to take that risk.

East West Market is an independent grocery store located in Vancouver, B.C. that offers natural, organic and fair-trade produce. In September 2018, the market instituted a charge of 5 cents per plastic bag as part of their #jointheearthmovement.

On June 6, the market announced that they have redesigned their plastic bags to help customers to remember their reusable bags when grocery shopping. These new plastic bags include embarrassing logos in large font in hopes of discouraging use of single-usage plastic.

Some of the logos include “Colon Care Co-Op” and “Into the Weird Adult Video Emporium.”

“We hope that by creating discussions, we can minimize the usage of plastics in general,” East West Market said in a statement. “This is a small step, but we hope it eventually can have a great impact. And we all do it with fun.”

Vancouver recently moved to ban plastic straws and foam cups and containers by this month. The ban is part of the city's Zero Waste 2040 strategy. The city will be among several across British Columbia to reduce plastic consumption through bylaw amendments in recent years.