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Big Y to Eliminate Plastic Bags at All Checkouts on Aug. 1

SPRINGFIELD — Big Y Foods Inc. announced it will eliminate single-use plastic bags at the checkouts from its more than 80 supermarket and specialty store locations in Massachusetts and Connecticut on Aug. 1. The grocer will offer discounts on reusable bags through the month of August as customers transition away from plastic.

Big Y has been complying with single-use plastic-bag bans in several Massachusetts communities since 2014. Coming off of recent changes to laws in various towns across the New England region, Big Y has moved up its 2020 timeline to eliminate single-use plastic at checkouts in all of its locations in order to streamline operations and to do its part to support sustainability.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, more than 380 billion plastic bags are used in the U.S. each year. When not disposed of properly, this plastic can end up in waterways and forests, where it can harm wildlife and local communities. By removing single-use plastic bags at checkout and encouraging shoppers to use reusable bags for their groceries, Big Y and its customers can work together to make a difference, eliminating the 100 million plastic bags that were previously distributed each year from the grocer.

“At Big Y, beyond providing great quality, great prices, and great customer service, we also try to be smart about the resources and energy we use,” said Richard Bossie, senior vice president of Operations and Customer Experience. “By working with our shoppers, we can further reduce consumption to make a difference in and around the tight-knit communities that we serve across New England.”

For those shoppers who do not bring their own shopping bags, beginning in August, a ten-cent charge per paper bag will be added to their bill. This fee is in an effort to promote the use of reusable bags instead of paper bags, which also cause harm to the environment.

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