ROCHESTER, NY (WXXI) – Starting today, single-use plastic bags won’t be available at area Wegmans stores.
The grocery chain is getting an early start on the state-wide ban, which begins in March.
Options for shoppers starting Monday include bringing in your own reusable bag, which the company recommends.
Or buy a paper bag at 5-cents each, with the proceeds going to the local food banks.
Wegmans spokesperson Deana Percassi saidcustomers can bring in old Wegmans plastic bags and reuse them at the store.
“We will allow that, but we really want to encourage to use reusable bags but we’ll continue to help customers with alternative bagging requests, so if they bring other things in we’re okay with that,” Percassi said.
But Percassi said customers should know the bag stands at the cash registers will not accommodate those plastic bags.
She said the supermarket chain is ready for the change, after doing pilot studies in four stores in Ithaca, Corning and Richmond, Virginia. Percassi said they’ve made some tweaks based on feedback from customers in those areas.
Many other retailers, including Tops Markets, will implement the new system at the state-mandated March 1 deadline. Tops says that when the law takes effect in March, it will continue to offer customers paper bag options for five cents with a portion of the proceeds going back to local charities.
Goodwill of the Finger Lakes will remove the single-use bags from all of its Rochester and Syracuse area stores on Saturday, February 1. That’s a month ahead of the state-imposed ban which takes effect March 1.
Goodwill shoppers are encouraged to bring reusable shopping bags or they can buy bags made from recycled materials that Goodwill will have available for 99-cents.