AMHERST - Earth Day celebrations will include the commencement of charging for plastic shopping bags at one local grocery store.
The Atlantic Superstore's Amherst Market will start charging consumers on April 22, which is the date of the national campaign set out by parent company Loblaws.
The move was made at the beginning of the year to protect the environment.
"Shopping with reusable bags, which can make a positive difference in waste reduction, requires a small change in behaviour for customers and our cashier colleagues - one that we hope they will be proud to make," said Julija Hunter, senior director for Corporate Affairs with Loblaw Companies Limited.
The change was kicked off in late January in Toronto, and is a cornerstone to the company's 20th anniversary of PC G.R.E.E.N. Products and Loblaw's ongoing commitment to respect the environment.
When purchasing groceries, consumers will have a couple of choices to choose from - pay $0.05 for plastic bags, purchase reusable bags at the store, or bring their own.
Hunter says Loblaw's data indicats that stores have have been charging a nominal fee for plastic shopping bags distribute more than 55 per cent fewer bags per $1,000 in sales than those providing the bags for free.
"In 2008, Loblaw's efforts in reducing plastic bags resulted in over 300 million plastic shopping bags diverted from the landfill," she said, adding the goal is to divert one billion from the landfills nationally by the end of the year.