Single-use plastic bags are to be banned in 10 Countdown supermarkets by May 21.
Affected stores will no longer offer plastic bags for groceries at check-out, and customers are encouraged to bring their own bags.
Countdown spokesperson Kiri Hannifin says the move is part of a broader initiative to make all stores plastic-bag-free by the end of 2018.
For those who forget about the policy, and turn up to the supermarket bagless with thoughts of having to lug their shopping home in their arms, Hannifin says reusable bags will be available for purchase as normal in-store. Customer notices will be placed at the front doors to remind people of the change.
Some teething issues are to be expected, and Hannifin says “we know it’s going to be pretty annoying, but we are committed because we know its the right thing to do”.
Since committing to a reduced bag policy, Countdown has scaled back usage by 16% in the last year.
Countdown, which is owned by Australian giant Progressive Enterprises, currently uses 350 Million single-use bags a year.