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The 5p carrier bag tax recently introduced by the Welsh Government is in the headlines yet again, as the Tax Payers’ Alliance announces they will be holding an “action day” in Cardiff on 19th May, to oppose what they consider a “draconian” tax.

A pressing issue, and one that isn’t likely to go away anytime soon, the carrier bag charge/tax will continue to generate headlines as it spreads across the UK – but aren’t we missing the point?  Whether we pay for a carrier bag or not, if we do not take every effort to reuse and recycle our plastic bags, the effect they have on the environment is going to remain unchanged.

Plastic carrier bags are extremely useful, and unless the UK government and the British Retail Consortium agree on a total ban, they will continue to be part of our everyday life, so would it not be better to educate the public on ways to recycle and reuse their carrier bags, rather than use the headlines to voice opinions?

The amount of information available to the public is limited, and so we have collated a list of ten tips on reusing and recycling plastic carrier bags, to help eradicate the term ‘single use carrier bag’:

  1. Reuse your plastic carrier bags as much as possible.  Simply fold away after each use and take them with you every time you go shopping.
  2. High quality plastic carrier bags can hold several kilos in weight so fill them up and reduce the amount you need for each shopping trip.
  3. Return damaged/unwanted plastic carrier bags to your local supermarket.  Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Morrison’s, Asda, and many other supermarket chains offer in-store recycling banks.
  4. Reuse your plastic carrier bag as a bin liner.
  5. Cut your bags into strips and make ‘Plarn’ – a versatile plastic yarn suitable for use in the garden or for making bags and hats.
  6. Donate them to charity shops and / or local market stallholders to reuse.
  7. Send you unwanted plastic bags to craft stores or designers who use them to create plastic art.
  8. If the handles break, use your plastic carrier bags for storing items or as a packaging material.
  9. Use them when travelling, to separately toiletries/shoes from your clothes.
  10. Finally, if you own a dog or cat, use your unwanted plastic carrier bag for pet waste.

If you have any tips on recycling plastic carrier bags or want to speak with one of our sales team please call 01234 675101 or fill in the contact form at the top of this page.