SINGAPORE: Shoppers will be charged for plastic bags at 25 NTUC FairPrice-owned outlets for a year, an extension of an earlier month-long trial, the retailer said on Monday (Nov 4).
From Nov 11, plastic bags will be available at participating outlets at S$0.20 per transaction at FairPrice supermarkets and S$0.10 per transaction at FairPrice Xpress and Cheers convenience stores. The seven stores involved in the earlier trial are also part of the year-long trial.
Proceeds from the sale of plastic bags at the 25 outlets will go towards sponsorship of environmental and community causes.
From the consumer sentiment study conducted at the seven outlets during the month-long trial, 71.1 per cent of the 1,745 customers surveyed expressed support for a plastic bag charge at supermarkets, said NTUC FairPrice.
Customers cited reasons such as wanting to save the environment and cutting down on waste.
Among those surveyed, 34.4 per cent said they do not bring their own bags when they went out shopping, and only 14.6 per cent brought their own bags all the time, said NTUC FairPrice.
Of the customers who did not support a plastic bag charge, about a third said that providing plastic bags was part of the expected store service; 11.9 per cent said they needed the plastic bags to line their trash bins; and 11.7 per cent said they simply did not want to pay an extra charge.
A small portion of customers, or 8.3 per cent, also said they were not supportive of the charge because it was too troublesome to bring their own bags.
With the year-long extension, FairPrice will also be rolling out new initiatives to engage the public to donate their clean reusable bags in participating stores for redistribution to customers who may need it.
Ms Pek Hai Lin, manager of Zero Waste SG, told CNA that she was "very heartened" to hear that the plastic bag charge had been extended. Zero Waste SG collaborated with NTUC on the month-long trial.
"One year is definitely a better gauge in terms of finding how people are responding to the charge and what more can be done," she said, adding that she hopes other supermarkets and retailers could implement similar measures.
CEO of NTUC FairPrice Seah Kian Peng thanked the public for its support; he said the earlier trial raised S$19,000, with proceeds going to the Singapore Children’s Society and The Straits Times School Pocket Money Fund.
The 25 participating stores are:
- FairPrice Xtra @ Hougang One
- FairPrice Xtra @ Kallang Wave Mall
- FairPrice Finest @ 100AM
- FairPrice Finest @ Zhong Shan Park
- FairPrice Finest @ Paya Lebar Quarter
- FairPrice Finest @ Terminal 3
- FairPrice Finest @ Funan
- FairPrice Finest @ Bukit Timah Plaza
- FairPrice Finest @ Valley Point
- FairPrice @ Coronation Plaza
- FairPrice @ Orchid Country Club
- FairPrice @ Tai Seng
- Cheers at 1 Create Way
- Cheers at Sengkang Community Hospital
- Cheers at Tanah Merah MRT Station
- Cheers at FairPrice Hub
- Cheers at Caribbean at Keppel Bay
- Cheers at 611 Aljunied Road
- Cheers at 174 Holland Road
- Cheers at 30 Dunearn Road
- Cheers at 141 Bukit Timah Road
- Cheers at 751 Bukit Timah Road
- Cheers at 650 Dunearn Road
- Cheers at 870 Dunearn Road
- FairPrice Xpress at 384 Lorong Chuan
Editor's note: The locations of several participating outlets have been amended following a correction from NTUC FairPrice.