Back in October of 2021, the state of Washington issued a ban on single-use plastic bags. This was supposed to save the environment by eliminating plastic bags from grocery and retail stores. However, it seemed to backfire.
A year later, in October of 2022, I wrote that the plastic bag ban didn’t really ban anything—it merely upgraded the item that was supposed to be purged. Grocery stores still used single-use plastic bags, they were just higher quality and you had to pay for them. However, at a fee of 8 cents per bag, I considered the product a bargain. These plastic bags were sturdy, dependable, and re-usable. Most of the time I visited the grocery store I was tempted to buy MORE plastic bags than what I needed just because they were so useful for day-to-day life.
Well, I have an update for you!…
I can no longer purchase these useful plastic bags at the grocery/retail giant our family shops at the most. Why? Because Walmart has banned all single-use plastic bags—flimsy old version AND sturdy new version—from all its stores in Washington. Wally World has swooped in and given teeth to the initiative that the state started.
Walmart started bracing us for the change a couple months ago and then it actually went into effect in April. At the check out areas you won’t see a plastic bag in sight. Unless you bring your own tote bags or pay 74 cents for the Walmart “reusable shopping bag” (made in China), you will be carrying your groceries out of the store by hand. Try doing that after going Sunday grocery shopping.
I miss the new plastic bags we could purchase. At the same time, I kind of respect Walmart for taking a stand and doing what the state had probably hoped it could do at the onset. I will continue to follow future developments. There are still mom and pop stores around Spokane that offer plastic and paper bags free of charge, but I am curious to see what other major grocery chains do. Stay tuned. Don’t Blink.