The plastic bag used to wrap up and disguise the 'I'm not a plastic bag' shopping bag to help avoid chaos was 'totally degradable', ThreeSixty said yesterday.
A spokeswoman for the retailer that is selling the popular Anya Hindmarch-designed bags said in a statement that they were wrapped in plastic bags made from a material called d2w, which did not require a biologically active environment to start degrading.
ThreeSixty released the statement in response to media reports about the wrapping material.
The spokeswoman added the outer bag was a cover-up to avoid drawing unnecessary attention to the hotly sought-after shopping bag after the chaos that occurred at The Landmark last Friday.
Wednesday's distribution venue was also moved from ThreeSixty at The Landmark to the Wellcome supermarket in The Forum at Exchange Square to divert traffic and ensure smooth purchases by ticket-holders.
But a spokeswoman for Golife, Anya Hindmarch's distributor in Hong Kong and Taiwan, said they were not informed of the sales location and method for the bags on Wednesday.
'We had no idea about the distribution,' she said. 'We tried to contact ThreeSixty, but we couldn't reach them.
'They are distributing on their own schedule. That's their operation; we have no control over that.'
Only 1,300 bags were made available in town, and the Golife spokeswoman said the chain did not expect the huge crowds trying to buy them.
'I hope the public can understand that this is a limited edition bag and we were advised by the police to give out purchase tokens,' she said.
'We didn't want to reveal the numbers of bags available earlier due to confidential reasons, but with the media quoting different numbers, we wanted to clarify.'
A campaign by environmentalists has been urging Hongkongers to use fewer plastic bags, but the response is generally attributed to the fact that the Anya Hindmarch bags are a fashion item.
'Perhaps the bag attracted much attention and it became a 'must have' fashion item to most people,' the Golife spokeswoman said.
'But it really was to raise awareness.'
The spokeswoman said she knew no one would be happy in this situation, but solutions had been developed to sort things out.
'We've got to deal with what's immediate and we have established hotlines and e-mail inquiry services for anyone who has concerns about the bags,' she said.