- Tissue Paper,
Ribbon & Labels
- Choose industry
- Upload artwork
- My account
Wednesday 28th September, 2016
As the anniversary of the introduction of the 5p plastic bag tax to England approaches, we recently ran a survey that asked 500 people from around the UK, ‘When you go shopping, do you take shopping bags with you?’. We wanted to find out how people’s shopping habits have changed since the tax was brought in, to see if the extra charge had encouraged customers to bring their own bags.
The possible answers for the survey were ‘Yes, every time’, ‘Occasionally, when I remember to’, ‘No, I pay for new bags every time’, or ‘No, I don't use bags for my shopping’.
From the survey results we found that the overwhelming majority of the survey respondents, 75%, said that they take bags with them when they go shopping (either occasionally or always). For women this number was even higher, with 81% saying that they take bags with them. The numbers were lower for men, at 72%. This could be because men are more likely to not use bags at all- over 14% of the males surveyed said they didn’t use bags for their shopping, but less than 7% of women said the same.
There were differences between ages too, as 73% of those we surveyed who are aged 65 or over said they always take shopping bags with them, compared to less than 20% of 18-24 year olds. The lower age group were more likely to only take bags ‘occasionally, when I remember to’, with 49% of 18-24s choosing this answer. The age group most likely to pay the plastic bag tax were those aged under 35, as 18.4% of 25-34 year olds and 17% of 18-24 year olds said they pay for new bags every time they go shopping.
Other statistics confirm that there has been a huge reduction in taking new bags. Plastic bag reduction in the UK is on target at around the predicted 80% less, which is brilliant news for the environment. Another consequence of the 5p tax is that paper bags have become more attractive to consumers. It’s not just the fact that they are free that makes paper bags so popular with customers, it is also their greener credentials compared to plastic shopping bags, as they are biodegradable and easy to recycle. Paper bags also look more stylish than their plastic counterparts, with endless possibilities for prints and designs to choose from.