New World supermarkets are giving customers the opportunity to vote on whether to keep plastic bags free or bring in a five or 10 cent charge for each plastic bag they use at the checkout – in a concerted effort to reduce pollution. 
If customers vote to pay for bags, New World will donate the proceeds from the bag charge to a variety of community and environmental causes including SEACLEANERS, who work to remove rubbish from waterways around New Zealand.
Steve Anderson, Managing Director Foodstuffs New Zealand says, “We have been working on a wide variety of environmental initiatives for years now, but the one issue that seems to really energise our customers is the topic of plastic shopping bags.  We believe the best way forward is to work with our customers and ask them what they want for the future.  The majority decision in BAGVOTE will rule – but regardless of the outcome, we’ll continue to work on reducing plastic bag use, providing more reusable bag options and increasing soft plastics recycling.”
New World customers can submit a vote online at from now until midnight on 8 October 2017.  New World will then publish the results on Tuesday 10 October.
Anderson says, “We believe there is a real appetite for change on this issue.  Our recent ban on plastic microbeads was met with universal support as was the introduction of 100percent recyclable meat trays. We’re also rolling out electric vehicles across many of our stores and increasing access to soft plastics recycling around the country.”
As further evidence of New World’s commitment to reducing bag usage, North Island owner-operators have also delivered a five cent rebate to customers who bring their own bags for use at the checkout, which has resulted in up to a 20 percent drop in plastic bag usage since it was implemented in January 2016.  The rebate will continue regardless of the BAGVOTE outcome.
SEACLEANERS has been invited to advise the New World team on more ways to protect the environment. “SEACLEANERS is an inspiring team with a powerful mission – to remove rubbish from our seas, harbours and oceans.  Since 2002 their team of volunteers has removed 40 million pieces of rubbish from the waters around New Zealand. A great outcome – but shocking to know that so much rubbish is in our oceans,” Anderson says.
SEACLEANERS is delighted to support New World’s campaign to promote awareness about reducing the use of plastic bags. 
“Every day we see the effect of improper use and disposal of plastic bags in our waterways,” says Captain Hayden Smith, who was voted Local Hero 2017 and is recognised internationally for the work he and his team do to clean up our seas.
“When New World asked us to get on board and help promote awareness of the BAGVOTE we were really happy to support them.  We hope that New Zealanders make the simple change to using more cloth reusable bags, and accept a charge for plastic bags if they absolutely need one.” 
For more information on the New World Plastic Bag Vote head to
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  1. Great promotion. Terrible grammar! The correct English is “fewer plastic bags”, not “less”.

  2. HYGIENE IS MOST IMPORTANT. Free plastic must stay to discourage people from bringing their own reusable bags to the New World Stores.
    After being on a kitchen bench and then in a kitchen cupboard or kitchen corner the bottom of a bag becomes bacteria infested. Then when the bag is taken to a New World Store and put in a trolley and then on the check out counter it can be a major distributor of all manner of bacteria linked back to a New World Store.

    • If you have such a problem with hygiene then maybe you can go to a bag place and buy your own bags
      I care more about our environment that we are screwing up and it’s the next generation that’s going to pay the consequences.

  3. Another supermarket charges for plastic bags, now. Have they lost any customer? NO.
    NEW WORLD has better products and more loyal shoppers. They will NOT desert you for a plastic bag. Make us proud, NEW WORLD, help reduce plastic bags.

  4. No keep bags free.
    Want to help the environment? Bring back brown paper bags – would help with cutting down on plastic and could use recycled paper.

  5. Do like our supermarket does – have been doing it for at least 10 years. – brookfield new world in Tauranga.
    they have ‘green cards’ in which they stamp for each bag you reuse. You may think it is not worth it but come Christmas time when I cashed in all my cards – I received over 60 dollars which all helps as well as saving our universe. I would do it anyway but the extra money also helps. thanks new world – keep it up.

  6. Pak n save charge for bags … VERY interested where money for bags goes too ..
    SOME suggestions to consider…
    The Auckland Mission, , St John Ambulance, Helicopter ferry services run here in Taranaki with Medical emergencies in mind, Salvation Army street and Drug prevention services , Lifeline Telephone Councelling services 0800543354 phone number ( a VERY VITAL work for everyone 24 hours a day , 367 days a year,, etc..

  7. There is no such site as Bagvote only comes up with do you mean Bugvote. Anyhow I do not see what the problem is with plastic bags and requiring customers to pay. There is a recycle bin outside for these bags, and mine are always only half full or less with lots of unnecessary bags, so if I have to pay for this no thankyou it is a racket for more money and charity – well. Anyhow other places do not charge e.g. Countdown, yes Pak & Save do, but I shall go to Countdown which are also open longer hours if this gets implemented. Shame on New World

  8. Get rid of the plastic bags altogether. Don’t charge for them!
    That’s just going to annoy people…we all know it’s time!


    Perhaps a fun campaign leading up to the change could provide customers with a complimentary (New World logo’d) reusable cloth shopping bag. Even better if one (or a few) of our very own kiwi artists/designers was commissioned by New World to come up with the design.

  9. Why don’t you go for the clean green compostable bags, that break down relatively quickly – then you would have my vote. This should have been a third option in your survey.

  10. How about “No plastic bags”
    We never had them in the past and it was never a problem. People adjust, you will always get those that can’t see past themselves but for our children and their children we need to change!
    We all need a little bacteria to stay healthy.

  11. I use my bags in so many ways and I think New world should not charge for carrier bags.
    I do not misuse these bags in any way shape or form.

  12. If you wish to charge for plastic bags customers use for their purchases you need to remove the plastic Rubbish Bags & go back to Paper Rubbish Sacks.

    If you don’t do that it shows your Company top be Hypocritical, so get working on those Paper Sacks.

    I would like to know if you changed to the Plastics ones in a very skewed idea that you would be saving Trees???????

    Trees are at least more renewable.

    As for all “The Greenies” I would like to know why they are driving cars/living in houses that are built of wood/bricks concrete etc. Rather than getting down to be making Adobe Bricks with which to build their homes & having a well for water & earth toilets???????

    Also why do they possess Mobile Phones/Electric light etc.

    Live the life they are banging on about those of us who do their best to reduce wastage in their personal life which the ‘Greens” ignore.

    I use my plastic bags more than once & I use them in my small kitchen bin. If I had a larger one I would be buying in your Supermarket ‘Large’ Kitchen Bin Bags, another product you sell that should not be on your shelves according to the idiot thinking your Company is spouting these days & spending Thousands of Dollars in your TV & Radio Advertising.

    Come op Wake up to your stupidity.

  13. Please tell me what of my comments need moderation???

    I was under the understanding that we live in a Society of “Free Speech” ?

  14. Just get rid of them plastic tragic bags all together and just charge the material bags for 50 cent…just my opinion

  15. Supermarket carry bags are not single use, and are not primarily the problem. If they are banned, customers will only have to replace them with rolls of bin liners, so where’s the advantage?

    The only viable alternative is cotton bags which can be regularly washed, but who is going to take the trouble? Last week’s meat or chicken leak is going to be next week’s health hazard.

    The problem is the flimsy bags torn off for fruit and vegetables. Replace those with paper bags in two sizes and you’ll be getting somewhere.


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