Portland Fred Meyer Stores Test Plastic Bag Ban

Portland Fred Meyer Stores Test Plastic Bag Ban

Fred Meyer Stores in Portland, Oregon, USA will eliminate plastic bags beginning August 1st, 2010. The plastic bag ban will be a test at the stores within the Portland city limits.

According to the news release, the company has already tested the idea at their Hawthorne store. The experiment has provided mixed results from customers.

Explaining why the test is being done now, the company says they want to be ready in case state legislation, or local ordinances, are passed which ban plastic bags in retail stores. The company stated, "By beginning and testing this plan now – and getting your feedback early– we can make sure we have everything right before new legislation goes into effect. It’s also better to begin our efforts earlier before more local governments put more piecemeal rules in place."

Back in late January of this year, Senator Mark Haas introduced legislation to ban single-use plastic bags. (See: Plastic Bag Ban In Oregon? The article also has a link to the full text of the bill SB1009.)

To see a time line of events and give your feedback about the idea, visit Fred Meyer plastic bag ban information site.
For more info visit FredMeyer.com.

5 Responses to "Portland Fred Meyer Stores Test Plastic Bag Ban"

  1. Karen   2011/02/14 at 3:43 pm

    Kudos to Fred Meyer for standing up for the environment. The health of our planet is infinitely more important to me than being able to carry groceries home in a plastic bag. I have several resusable shopping bags and they work great. Disposable plastic bags are bad for the earth. The earth is our home. I don’t want our home to be harmed, and there are things we can all do to help. To me this is a no-brainer. Please think about the future of our planet, stop whining about being inconvenienced and do your part to save the earth.

  2. Mike   2010/09/26 at 12:40 pm

    The unavailability of plastic bags makes it more difficult to carry items out to the vehicle- I can carry two paper bags, opposed to several plastic bags by the handles.
    It is often wet in Oregon, and paper bags do not go well when wet or damp.
    So folks tend to use shopping carts for over three bags of groceries-instead of carrying their purchase.
    This creates more work for the store, as You know, or makes an unnecessary customer trip to return a cart that otherwise would not be required.
    I do not support the re-use of carrier bags unless i pack them myself, as i do not want meat or chicken potentially leaking salmonella onto the fruits and vegetables or cereals or possible cross contamination upon reuse of a bag at a later date.
    The plastic bags were re-used later at home for cat litter, and now we have to shop elsewhere to get the bags for that.
    If anyone really cared what happened to the bags, to make an effort to reduce the amount of discards, it makes infinitely more sense to place a returnable deposit on bag- that would encourage people to pick them up and return them to the store where they could then be recycled.
    I shop less at Fred Meyers now, then i have in the past- Just because someone thinks so little of the character of their constituents and customers that they decide to “make the decision for them” by removing access to all for the “social crime” of the people who are lazy or “p.c.” insensitive.
    Might as well close the parks because of littering, when held to that standard of logic.

  3. Jana   2010/08/23 at 11:54 pm

    Thank you for banning the use of plastic bags at the Hollywood Fred Meyer. I admire your company for doing the right thing, not just the easy thing. Plastic bags did not exist when I was young and we got by just fine. Many thanks again, happy customer, Jana!

  4. Ted Duboise   2010/08/22 at 5:45 pm

    Thank you for your comments Mr. Hodges. It is easy to see that you’ve spent a lot of time on this subject. The facts mentioned are very good points. It seems as if the people in your area are diligent about disposing of plastic bags properly. In many other places they’re not.

    Any problems arising from plastic bags are, of course, caused by humans. Basically, I agree with you about too many laws and regulations. However, as I’m sure that you are aware, if humans don’t take care of problems on their own, sometimes laws must be passed to ensure the comfort of the society as a whole.

    Again, Thanks!

  5. Richard W. Hodges   2010/08/22 at 4:28 pm

    Any law or rule will eliminate some freedom of choice for the sake of gaining
    freedom from the consequences of such choice. Also, any regulation should result in a
    significant increase, and not decrease, in freedom. Otherwise, the people end up getting
    micro-managed over every little thing. Therefore, the proposal to eliminate the choice of
    shoppers to use plastic bags at checkout should not be enacted.
    The positives of this proposal are negligible and over exaggerated at best. I’m not
    saying that a plastic bag hasn’t killed a fish or a bird, but it’s rare. I often go out
    on the sloughs, lakes and rivers and have never seen any evidence of any wildlife being
    hurt by these bags. My observation is that there’s really not a lot of these bags to be
    found in or out of the city. Often when I go for a walk or a run, I’ll find some
    returnable cans and bottles on the street, but have a hard time finding a discarded
    plastic bag to put them in. On July 16th, I did an experiment where I walked the two
    miles home from work that I normally do on my bike. I looked to see how many of these
    bags that I could find. I looked high and low, down side streets, at trees and bushes, in
    parking lots etc., but found only one bag. People are very good at properly disposing of
    these bags. Some end up being recycled at the stores where they came from, even though
    almost all could be recycled if the city came up with a provision for accomplishing this.
    Since the city has failed to come up with a system to recycle them, most end up in the
    land fill. However, they don’t take up much room in the landfill, since they’re so flimsy
    and are easily compressed by all of the weight above them. They don’t decompose quickly
    in the landfill, but so does nothing else, with no water or air to work with. I remember
    a few years ago, where an archaeologist dug up a 75 year old newspaper out of a land
    fill, and sat there and read it, apparently it being in about the same condition that it
    was when put there 75 years earlier.
    The positives of maintaining the current choice of plastic bags at checkout are
    many. I like the convenience of being able to not have to carry around the bulkier
    reusable bags, especially not knowing how many I’ll need. When going to the store, one
    needs the flexibility to buy more than planned for. When comparing plastic to paper, a
    person can carry more with plastic, especially when walking home or on a bike. I put the
    plastic bags holding my purchases from the store on my handle bars, along with my food
    and other things that I transport to and from work and other places. With plastic, your
    arms can hang straight down to your sides when walking, which is much easier than with
    paper, where your arms have to be held at a right angle at the elbow. If this inexpensive
    bag gets dirty or damaged, I just grab another one that I have in a box and eventually
    recycle the replaced one if possible. I store my ice cream in a plastic grocery bag in
    the freezer , which keeps it fresher. I also use a plastic store bag to put used cat
    litter in before disposal. Many people use these bags to pick up after their dogs when
    taking their dogs on a walk outside.
    I urge no passage of this proposal, since it will accomplish little to nothing, and
    will be a hardship and an inconvenience to all, especially those of little means.

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