One of the most challenging decisions when operating a shop is what bags to get. Paper or plastic? Does it matter? We’ve done the research for you, now it’s up to you to make a decision. Some of the below facts may surprise you!

Plastic:


Pros:

  • Better protections of your products from environmental factors; i.e. if your customer is caught in the rain, their purchases are less likely to get damp.
  • They also won’t break down in the rain, so your customer won’t suffer a broken bag and products all over the street.
  • They are lightweight and easy to store in your shop before  using them.
  • They are recyclable, and can be used over and over by your customer.
  • They tend to be more economical than paper bags, averaging a lower cost per bag.

Cons

  • Plastic is a byproduct of oil refining – the procedure to drill for oil is very impactful on the environment.
  • Oil is considered by most to be a non-renewable resource
  • Plastic litter can enter waterways and cause the death of animals by choking.

Paper


Pros

  • Most consider paper to be more environmentally friendly, and it gives an ‘eco’ feel to your customer’s shopping experience.
  • Paper breaks down over time, meaning it is not clogging landfill, and will be less likely to injure wildlife.
  • Paper bags tend to be more structured, making them easier for your customer to carry
  • It is easier to DIY customize paper bags, such as with stamps or stickers, which can be an economical choice for your shop
  • A printed paper carry bag is a stylish way to extend the branding of your shop

Cons

  • It is a little known fact that paper bags also consume fossil fuels during manufacture.
  • The pulping and dyeing process often contributes to water pollution
  • Paper bags can break if they become damp, which could lead to a customer’s purchases strewn all over the road.

Consider which of the facts mentioned are of greatest priority to you, to your store and to your customers. Striking a good balance is possible – it just requires some thought. Still confused? Contact us for more advice, specific to your needs. 

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