The Co-op Blog!

Chico's New Bag Ordinance

On January 1, 2015, Chico’s new plastic bag ordinance will go into effect. The goal of the ordinance is to reduce the use of single-use bags throughout the town. Ideally, this will result in fewer fossil fuels consumed in manufacturing the bags, less unsightly garbage floating around town, and a more enlightened citizenry practicing the first and second of the three “R”s—Reduce & Reuse. Read on to see how the ordinance will impact the Co-op.

Will the Co-op still offer its reusable Roplast bags?

The Co-op will most definitely still be offering its award-winning Roplast bags. They have always been made to be reused over one hundred times and are sturdy enough to meet the requirements of the ordinance. The Roplast bags are made in Oroville from 100% recycled materials and are 100% recyclable as well! We’ve yet to find another option that marries sustainability, affordability, and convenience as well as our current bags.  However, the new law does make one significant change: the Co-op will now have to charge for reusable bags. Starting in 2015, we will be charging five cents for the reusable bags.

Will the Co-op still sell recyclable paper bags?

Absolutely! The new ordinance requires that stores charge for paper bags, a policy the Co-op has been practicing for more than two years already with our largest paper bags.  From now on, we will be charging the same twenty cents for all paper bags, regardless of size, given away at the register.

Will the Co-op be charging for bulk bags or produce bags?

No. The bag ordinance specifically exempts “a bag without handles provided to a customer to: (1) transport prepared food, produce, bulk food, or meat from a department within a store to the point of sale; (2) hold prescription medication dispensed from a pharmacy; or (3) segregate food or merchandise that could damage or contaminate other food or merchandise…”.  Only bags given at the register to take items out of the store are covered by the ordinance.

Do CalFresh benefits pay for bag charges?

Customers paying with CalFresh or any other need-based government aid are exempt from the charges levied by the bag ordinance. Please let your cashier know that you will be paying with your benefits, and they will be sure to waive the charge.

How many times can the Roplast Bag be reused?

We’ve seen many customers bring their bags back 100 times—or even more! We’ve come up with a fun and rewarding way of keeping track. Every time you reuse your Roplast bag, your cashier will put a sticker on one of the 100 check-boxes on the bag.  When all the boxes are filled in, you win a limited-edition CNFC canvas bag!

Click here to view the ordinance