Salmon Arm retailers press plastic bags back into service

City supports temporary suspension of bylaw banning single-use plastic bags

Re-usable bags are out and plastic is back in as Salmon Arm retailers aim to stem the spread of COVID-19.

The city’s grocery stores and other retailers have switched back to plastic bags for fear the virus could be spread through the use of reusable fabric bags.

A bylaw banning single-use plastic bags went into effect on July 1, 2019. But Salmon Arm Mayor Alan Harrison said the city is in support plastic bags being pressed back into service.

“At this time, the priority has to be everyone’s health, so we are certainly not intending on enforcing any parts of the bylaw during this time,” said Harrison. “And I really appreciated – a number of the retailers phoned and talked to me and said, ‘hey listen, this is the situation, this is what we plan on doing,’ just to check in with us, and we are totally supportive of a temporary transition back to plastic bags.”

Read more: Save-On-Foods temporarily bans reusable shopping bags, suspends bottle returns due to COVID-19

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Harrison said Salmon Arm residents have been very committed to using reusable bags, and he is confident they’ll be able to transition back to them in the future.

Salmon Arm grocers have been providing the plastic bags free of charge.

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