British retailer Marks & Spencer has replaced plastic bags for life with paper carrier bags as part of an environmental initiative.
The company has introduced Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified paper bags in all its UK stores. It offers a sturdy paper bag for groceries and a simpler version for its clothing section.
These paper bags can carry more than 15kg or six four-pint bottles of milk and can be reused over 100 times.
A natural resin applied during the manufacturing process makes them water-resistant. They can also be folded into a backpack shape and recycled at home.
Marks & Spencer collaborated with a team from the University of Sheffield to assess the bags’ environmental impact. The bags are manufactured using renewable energy at a hydro-powered paper mill in Scandinavia.
The M&S director of corporate affairs, Victoria McKenzie-Gould, said in a blog post: “We now have a solution that is better environmentally, and which helps customers looking to make small changes to reduce their environmental footprint.
“For the vast majority who already reuse their own bags, which remains the most sustainable option, not a lot will change.
“But on the odd occasion when we all need to reach for one more bag, we’re pleased to be offering a more sustainable option for customers.”
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Household names like Marks & Spencer are now embracing the shift to sustainability.
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