Aldi Becomes First Major US Retailer To Eliminate Plastic Shopping Bags From All Of Its Stores

In a recent statement, CEO Jason Hart announced that Aldi will be the first leading American retailer to remove plastic shopping bags from all of its stores.

For months, the discount grocery retailer has been slowly phasing out the availability of plastic bags for purchase at their checkouts.

Aldi has announced that the elimination of plastic bags from all 2,300 of its locations will result in a yearly reduction of over 4,400 tons of plastic, which is equivalent to the mass of “20 Lady Liberty statues.”

According to Hart, utilizing a reusable bag while shopping is a simple yet impactful action that can contribute to a better environment for all.

Aldi stores will continue to offer reusable cloth bags for purchase.

By the year 2035, Aldi plans to incorporate natural refrigerants into all of its US stores as part of its efforts towards sustainability. Currently, more than 600 of its stores are already utilizing these environmentally-friendly refrigerants.

Several grocery retailers, including Kroger, are currently taking steps to eliminate the use of single-use plastic bags in all of their store branches.

In certain states, such as California and New York, legislators have implemented bans on plastic bags, resulting in retailers like Walmart being required to eliminate the choice at their stores within those states.

Many state and local governments have implemented plastic bag fees at grocery stores in an effort to curb Americans’ plastic pollution. Effective January 1, 2023, the State of Colorado mandated a 10-cent fee for each disposable paper and plastic bag used at check-out. This is wide-spread throughout all retail outlets in Colorado, not just at the grocery store. Retailers can keep $0.04 of each $0.10 fee collected. The fee can be used to cover costs to comply with the ordinance, including providing reusable bags and training employees.

It is expected to see the trend of charging for bags at check outs grow across the country.