ParknShop scraps 'no plastic bag' policy

PUBLISHED : Monday, 26 November, 2007, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 26 November, 2007, 12:00am

ParknShop has scrapped its five-day-old policy of asking customers to pay for plastic bags, saying that it had come under severe criticism.

Starting today, ParknShop will stop asking customers to donate 20 cents for each bag. Green groups last night criticised the sudden U-turn.

The city's dominant supermarket chain last Wednesday stopped automatically handing out plastic bags to customers. Shoppers who wanted a bag were asked to pay 20 cents each. The levy was voluntary.

A ParknShop spokeswoman last night confirmed the change in policy, which she said had been attacked over a lack of transparency regarding how the donations would be used. The chain would continue to encourage the use of fewer plastic bags and staff would give out bags only on request.

On Friday, the chain said more than half of shoppers had brought their own bag or rejected plastic bags.

Man Chi-sum, chief executive of Green Power, said: 'The policy will be totally in vain because there is no financial incentive for shoppers to cut down the use of plastic bags.

'A bit of disorder is inevitable at the beginning of the policy. They should have given it more time.'

Angus Ho Hon-wai, executive director of Greeners Action, also expressed regret that the policy had been scrapped.