Loblaw eliminating plastic bags

Shoppers will no longer be able to get a plastic bag at any Loblaw Companies stores starting in the first quarter of 2023.

Loblaw Companies Limited plans to eliminate all single-use plastic shopping bags from its corporate and franchise grocery stores, pharmacies, and PC Express service across the country. 

“As a purpose-led organization, committed to helping Canadians live life well, we are proud to be taking a significant step on such an important environmental issue,” said Robert Sawyer, chief operating officer, Loblaw Companies Limited. 

“Since 2007, our efforts to reduce the number of single-use plastic shopping bags leaving our stores has led to 13.8 billion fewer bags potentially going into landfill.”

This move completes a 15-year journey, which commenced with the company being one of the first major retailers in Canada to implement a pay-for-bag program to help reduce plastic waste.

The adoption of a plastic bag fee led to a 70% decline in the use of plastic bags in its stores, and shoppers have turned to reusable bags and plastic bins as alternatives.  As single-use plastic shopping bags are phased out systematically, province by province, customers will be supported with a variety of reusable alternatives as well as ongoing communications to raise awareness of the options available.

This is the latest in a long line of announcements related to Loblaw’s environmental, social and governance (ESG) efforts.  Notably, to help fight climate change, Loblaw will achieve the following: net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2040 for Scope 1 and 2, and net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 for Scope 3; reduce plastic waste by making all of its control brand and in-store packaging recyclable or reusable by 2025; send zero food waste to landfill by 2030; and more.