The Alternative to “Paper or Plastic?”

February 17, 2015 Staples Advantage


It hasn’t been an easy few years for the retail industry, with economic downturns nibbling away at consumer budgets and online shopping luring away the foot traffic many stores depend on. Boosting traffic, keeping good employees and offering more options to the customer all weigh heavily on retail businesses both large and small, and even the once simple question of “paper or plastic” has become complicated.

It wasn’t so long ago that plastic bags were considered the environmentally friendly option— they didn’t use trees, and they are recyclable. But many cities, including Chicago, Austin and Seattle, have banned Plastic bag alternativesthe use of plastic bags, and more than 100 communities in California have restricted plastic bags ahead of the statewide SB270 ban to take effect in July.

So with “paper or…” trailing off without a second option, what’s a retailer to do? Your Brand Partner has some great suggestions, including selling or strategically gifting customers with:

  • Cotton totes
  • Recyclable nonwoven bags
  • Laminated nonwoven bags
  • Foldable totes

For the benefits and attributes of each of these alternatives, Crystal Wiebe has the full story here, along with more information to help you navigate the smart, sustainable options you have have to fill in the blank when you need to fill up a bag.


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