As part of our “Kick the Plastic Habit!” campaign, we are taking steps to REDUCE our use of plastic at the Market. We are asking you to REUSE your fabric shopping bag each week instead of getting single-use plastic bags from the vendors. And we encourage you to RECYCLE any single-use plastic bags you have at our recycling booth at the Market.
In case you were wondering why those plastic bags are so bad, here is some information compiled by Reuseit.com for an article titled The Plastic Bag Pandemic.
- The U.S. goes through 100 billion plastic shopping bags annually at an estimated cost to retailers of $4 billion (The Wall Street Journal).
- According to data from the Ocean Conservancy‘s annual International Coastal Cleanups, plastic bags are consistently in the top 10 pieces of trash collected on beaches around the world.
- The extremely slow decomposition rate of plastic bags leaves them to drift on the ocean for untold years. According to the Algalita Marine Research Foundation, these plastic bags cause the death of many marine animals (fish, sea turtles, etc.), every year when animals mistake them for food.
- When plastics break down, they don’t biodegrade; they photodegrade. This means the materials break down to smaller fragments which readily soak up toxins. They then contaminate soil, waterways, and animals upon digestion (Earth911).
- 10% of the plastic produced every year worldwide winds up in the ocean. 70% of which finds its way to the ocean floor, where it will likely never degrade (United Nations).
The solution – Reusable Shopping Bags!
Each reusable bag can eliminate hundreds (if not thousands) of plastic bags. Let’s endeavor to shift away from the use-and-toss culture — bring your reusable bags to shop at the Market!