You have a month until you start paying for those supermarket bags at the checkout. August 3 is D-Day for freebie plastics bags at Foodstuffs supermarkets NZ-wide. And it’s not to get more money out of us they reckon, it’s all part of a bigger plan.

Kiwi supermarket group Foodstuffs has formed a partnership with the environmental charity, Keep New Zealand Beautiful (KNZB) as part of its initiative to reduce plastic bag usage.

Foodstuffs’ New World stores will sponsor KNZB’s annual Cleanup Week and Four Square stores will sponsor its Best Towns and Cities Awards.

In addition to the partnership, individual New World and Four Square stores have committed to make contributions to community initiatives out of the proceeds from the recently announced five cent charge per plastic check-out bag. The charge comes into effect on August 3 this year.

New World and Four Square stores will be encouraging customers to use reusable bags with a customer awareness campaign to assist with the transition to charging for bags.

Foodstuffs (New Zealand) Managing Director, Tony Carter said: “Keep New Zealand Beautiful’s messages of ‘Be a Tidy Kiwi’ and ‘Do the Right Thing’ complement Foodstuffs’ commitment to drastically reduce the effects of plastic bags in our environment.” “Foodstuffs’ proactive approach to further reducing the impact of plastic bags on the New Zealand environment means that they are a great fit for KNZB,” said Simon Johnston, CEO of KNZB.

“The sponsorship will enable us to continue our cleanup activities and projects to keep New Zealand beautiful and free of litter.”

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