Customers in Serbia did not react well to paying for bags in supermarkets, but it turned out that this measure really reduces the use of disposable bags, according to the equation – the more expensive the bag, the fewer purchases.

In Great Britain, this method of combating plastic waste was introduced a little earlier than in Serbia, in 2015, and it reduced the use of disposable bags by 97% in supermarkets, announced the British Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra).

Before the payment was introduced, in 2014, 7.6 billion bags were used. The measure was introduced in supermarkets in 2015 and cost 5 pence a bag, and last year it was extended to all businesses with an increase in the price of a bag to 10 pence.

The price increase had the effect of reducing the use of bags by 20%. In 2019/20, 627 million bags were used, and in 2021/22, 496 million. Statistics show that the average person now buys just 3 bags a year from big retailers compared to 140 in 2014.

As a result of the change, retailers have donated £200m to charity, research shows. Last year alone they donated 10 million pounds to arts, sports, health, environment, education.

Shoppers in the UK also have the option to recycle bags they no longer use and leave them in specially designated areas outside supermarkets.

E2 portal (Circular economy)

Source: E2 Portal by

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