Shoppers to use more bags for life when the bag charge starts, reports IGD


Most food and grocery shoppers say they will use their own bags, when the mandatory charge for single-use carrier bags starts today (Monday) in England.

The latest IGD ShopperVista research finds:

  • Two-thirds (64%) of shoppers plan to use bags for life
  • A fifth (19%) say the charge won’t affect them as they already use their bags for life

Vanessa Henry, IGD ShopperVista insight manager, said: “The vast majority of shoppers (77%) plan to make some kind of change to their bag use when the levy comes into force. This echoes what’s happened in Wales, where the number of single-use plastic bags has fallen by more than 70% since a charge was introduced there.

“Nearly a quarter (23%) of the shoppers we spoke to said they plan to reduce the number of bags they take from their supermarkets when the charge starts. Only a tiny minority (3%) say they will continue to shop like before and continue to use, and now pay, for single-use carrier bags.

“The vast majority of shoppers say they will start using bags for life, with those in London (67%) more likely to do so than those in the north (63%). Londoners shop for groceries more often than shoppers in other parts of the country, so have more motivation for using bags for life.

“Some shoppers (9%) plan to get around the charge by carrying more items by hand, especially younger people (25%) – those aged between 18 to 24-years-old.”