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Massy Stores tackles single use plastic bags starting July 3, 2018

By Massy Stores

(PRESS RELEASE VIA SNO) – As of July 3, Massy Stores throughout the Caribbean, will begin a campaign to discourage the use of single use plastic bags for bagging of groceries at its checkouts, while actively encouraging customers to shop with reusable bags as a more eco-friendly option.

The strategy to reduce plastic waste is part of the Massy group’s broader commitment to becoming more environmentally sensitive throughout its operations and finding ways of operating more sustainably throughout the region.

This is a phased and gradual strategy which includes a review of all Massy Stores operational practises as well as discussions with suppliers, manufacturers, policy makers, environmental groups and customers. Here in St. Lucia the company will be charging twenty five (25) cents for single use plastic bags provided at checkout.

Managing Director of Massy Stores (SLU) Martin Dorville says the company is focused on finding more permanent solutions to reducing plastic waste and its own demand for plastic bags. He says the decision to encourage customers to use less plastic is bold, courageous and will help to manage the adverse impacts of single use plastic on the environment.

Noting that there has been a wide spectrum of reactions to the initiative to start charging, the company is of the view that behavioural change needs to be rapid and radical if plastic pollution is be reduced and the quality of the environment improved. The expectation is that the charge will serve as a deterrent, causing customers to be more mindful of how they use plastic bags. By charging we develop a practice which reminds them to bring in their reusable bags.

“The strategy to reduce plastic waste generated by and from our operations is critical to safeguarding the environment in which we live, work and play. The continued distribution of single use plastic bags at our stores is an area over which we have immediate control and where collectively with our customers we can have a great impact. The transition may be a difficult for some of our customers in the beginning, thus the early notification of the change, and the ramping up of our reusable bag awareness and promotion campaigns. We are convinced that our collective efforts to curb demand for single use plastics will benefit generations to come,” says Mr. Dorville.

The Managing Director acknowledges that there will be instances where customers will continue to be provided with a plastic bag free of charge. He confirms that customers will receive a free plastic bag if this is necessary to protect loose foodstuffs from dirt and pathogens and prevent seepage from raw fish, raw meat, or raw poultry which could lead to cross contamination.

While acknowledging that businesses have a responsibility to manage plastic waste to minimise adverse impacts of their operations on the environment, the company recognises the importance of policy shifts through legislation as a critical component to catalyse much needed change where this is concerned.

Massy Stores is encouraging organisations with a core environmental mandate to accelerate their programmes to help customers with this important transition. Further and to support such efforts, proceeds from the plastic bag sales will be placed into an Environmental Fund to help with environmental awareness, recycling, waste collection and repurposing projects. This fund will operate in similar vein to the Super J IGA Green Bag fund, which was set up by the company in 2010 and from which environmental organizations including the St. Lucia Solid Waste Management Authority, the St. Lucia National Trust, the Caribbean Youth Environment Network and schools have been assisted with environmental initiatives ranging from awareness to recycling.

The St. Lucia Solid Waste Management Authority has indicated that “a shift from waste disposal to waste reduction is important if we are to minimize the quantity of waste reaching our landfills”. Waste reduction which includes prevention and recycling facilitates better management of waste overall. The Authority notes that the Deglos Sanitary Landfill will run out of space in approximately thirteen (13) years while the Vieux-Fort Solid Waste Management Facility will run out of space in under five (5) years.

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This article was posted in its entirety as received by stlucianewsonline.com. This media house does not correct any spelling or grammatical error within press releases and commentaries. The views expressed therein are not necessarily those of stlucianewsonline.com, its sponsors or advertisers.

10 comments

  1. First massy started by cutting down on customer credits now they are charging 25 cents for nylon bags that are said to be bio-degradable, it's all a money making Scam all over by Massa to take from the poor. They care less about the poor, needy, widow and fatherless. Everyone is about his own, stingy and selfish.

    The great judge is still on the throne and he sees and know all what is being done on earth.

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  2. This is profiteering disguised as going green.

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  3. Not one damn red penny.

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  4. Thumbs up

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  5. Massy store should give every card holder customer a reusable environment safe bag. There after it customers want more bags . He or she should then purchase. Not a bad idea at all. Stop the pollution.

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  6. Someone bold have to take a stand thank you Mr. Dorvielle of Massy's news. Everywhere you turn is a plastic bag, in the drains, on the sides of our highways, on our fields ect, anywhere there is an empty lot. On people fencing along the roads. it is really disgusting to watch.

    let people come to shop with their own shopping bags. I have enjoyed Massy's bags for years to dispose my garbage. I will continue buying two every time I shop just for garbage. It goes to the land field. I almost chocked one time coming from overseas landing at the vigie airport to see so much plastic bags and bottles around the Tapion reef area some years ago. When the trough came I'm sure all this went straight to the City of Castries.

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  7. Why not switch to biodegradable bags? Cost cutting passed onto consumers. This has squat to do with environment when most of the items Massy sells comes in some form of plastic. Shall we now spend less money at Massy and more at other stores. Sure the choices are limited but thats what happens when politicians get in bed with private companies. They stifle out competition and inevitably it comes back to bite the small man.

    #ByeMassy

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  8. Sabina Belizaire

    Messy too dirty!!! This is only going to cause more garbage in the environment because the poor people who use the bags to dispose of their garbage will not buy garbage bags !!!!! Contrary to what massy says, the bags are biodegradable!!!! They completely disintegrate after a while. The government should charge Massy a levy for causing further garbage in the environment because of the disposal of goods sold in other containers such as bleach, ketchup, juice bottles etc....This is where massy should be trying to make the difference...As we all know there are more Styrofoam food disposal boxes and bottles in the environment than massy bags!!!! We are not ignorant!!!! Shame on you!!! Taking advantage of already struggling people!!!!!

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  9. I disagree with that move mass you for many reasons
    1. To help eco friendly environment why not sell paper bags or reusable bags. You selling the same product which is harming our eco system this is pure stupidity.

    2. Why not encourage customers to recycle instead you with to recycle for them at a cost to them this is so crazy.
    What are you giving back come on now. There are more people out there who can only afford the basic needs.

    Please let's be considerate and implement something that will be beneficial to all not just you.

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  10. Great move. Always wondered if this would ever happen. Way to many bags used by these stores for so little. These bags are indistructable and are-an environmental concern to all. Gone are the days when cloth bags were king and plastic bags was gold. Now the gold has turn into an environmental nightmare.

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