- Posted by: Mike Hedges MS
- Category: Latest News
The distribution of single use carrier bags in Wales has reduced by up to 96% in some retail sectors since the Welsh Government’s 5p carrier bag charge came into force, according to new figures from retailers.
Research also indicates that the 5p bag charge is now supported by 70% of people in Wales. The findings are drawn jointly from behavioural research undertaken by Cardiff University and from figures provided by retailers and the British Retail Consortium. The aim is to measure the impact of the Welsh Government’s charge for bags which came into force on 1st October 2011.
The Cardiff University research monitored attitudes and behaviours to carrier bag use just before the introduction of the charge and again six months later. The research showed that the number of shoppers who said they had used their own bags on their last supermarket trip rose from 61% in September 2011 to 82% by April 2012. It also found that Welsh support for the bag charge had increased from 59% to 70% in the six month period whilst opposition to the charge had dropped to just 17%.
Returns from a sample of retailers showed a similarly positive picture, with food retailers reporting up to a 96% reduction in bag use, fashion retailers reporting up to 75% reduction and home improvement retailers reporting a 95% reduction. Food service retailers reported up to a 45% reduction in bag use whilst telecommunication retailers reported a reduction of up to 85%.